This document sets out the tax strategy of McLean & Appleton (Holdings) Ltd (t/a Hatfields) and its subsidiaries which aims to define a framework for the group’s approach to tax and provides guidance to the principles adopted.
This document will be reviewed annually, updated as appropriate and approved by the Board of Directors. It is effective for the year ended 31st January 2020 and is intended to comply with the requirements of Schedule 19 of the Finance Act 2016.
The Finance Team are accountable to the Board of Directors and responsible for the implementation and the management of the tax strategy and related risk across the Group.
The group solely operates in the UK and therefore has no overseas activities and does not pay tax in any overseas jurisdictions.
Our tax strategy is to comply with the UK tax laws, whilst seeking to deliver value to our shareholders.
McLean & Appleton (Holdings) Ltd is committed to paying the right amount of tax required under the laws and regulations of UK tax legislation and practice. It takes a conservative approach to tax planning and does not pursue aggressive tax planning arrangements. The group uses third party advisors to provide advice and guidance necessary to assess the tax risks and ensure its compliance with applicable laws, rules, regulations, and reporting and disclosure requirements.
Approach to tax risk management and governance
The Board is responsible to ensure the group has appropriate tax advisory and compliance functions. The execution of the strategy and policies are the responsibility of the Head of Finance who ensures that the tax aspects of business arrangements are evaluated and carefully considered and that there are appropriate policies, procedures and systems to ensure the accuracy of tax declarations and timeliness of payments.
The Head of Finance is assisted by a capable finance team of 21 staff. All staff have clear roles and responsibilities to ensure compliance with tax (and financial) requirements. Staff are suitably skilled and training is offered as considered relevant. In cases of uncertainty, matters will be referred to the Head of Finance who where needed may seek advice from external professional advisors or direct from HMRC. External tax advisers prepare the group’s corporation tax computations and external assurance is provided on the group’s indirect taxes compliance.
McLean & Appleton (Holdings) Ltd has a low risk tax strategy which seeks to optimise shareholder value by reducing taxes by legitimate reliefs and allowances but avoiding artificial tax structures, such as those involving overseas tax havens.
Tax planning and risk
The group maintains a tax risk register, which is reviewed by the board annually and outlines the principal tax risks faced by the group. The register details the responsibilities of management to control and mitigate the risks within the framework of an effective compliance function.
The group produces annually a detailed tax overview document, which summarises the group operations and tax risks associated with the group’s activities. This document forms the basis for the Board to evaluate and define the overall strategy.
Dealings with HM Revenue and Customs
The group currently corresponds with HMRC through its tax advisers and occasionally directly with regard to routine enquiries and tax inspections. Given the group has recently entered the Senior Accounting Officer regime, we would welcome the anticipated more regular and structured open dialogue that this delivers to provide certainty over our tax affairs to both McLean & Appleton (Holdings) Ltd and HMRC. At all times, the group seeks to communicate openly and fairly with tax authorities and to maintain good relationships.