Seafarers tax is being abused

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marky9074
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Fri Oct 28, 2005 7:34 pm

Please read and comment...

Mark
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marky9074
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Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:00 pm

I read with interest the comments regarding the abuse of foreign earnings deduction. Having started my seagoing career some years ago as a cadet with P&OCL, moved on to a career in surveying, then come ashore as a VTS operator, I appreciate the issue from both sides. I understand the frustration that his vessel was taken over by a group of whinging individuals, but would like to assure him that this is not a fair representation of the offshore industry as a whole.

I do though take exception to the comments that individuals are ‘abusing’ the system. As I understand it, foreign earnings deduction applies to a diverse spectrum of people employed ‘on seagoing vessels’ and is not restricted to just ‘deck and engineering’ officers.

On a cruise ship is it not normal for a barman or entertainer to be equally entitled to a discharge book and seaman’s card, and ultimately to claim foreign earnings deduction? The possession of a discharge book does in no way guarantee acceptance of claims for foreign earnings deduction. The fact remains however that if an individual is carrying out the duties of their employment, on a vessel which the Inland Revenue accept as qualifying for seafaring status, a claim can still be agreed even without a discharge book. The statement that people are falsely obtaining discharge books for the purpose of claiming foreign earnings deduction is somewhat profound and without substance.

It is also worth noting that the possibility exists that these people were actually self-employed (as they were obviously contractors/freelancers on a day rate) and would not in fact be able to claim foreign earnings deduction directly.

I believe NUMAST should clarify these allegations. As I understand it as long as you serve on a qualifying vessel and qualify for the deduction there is no distinction between capacities.

This is what I have written though not come up with an ending yet...
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marky9074
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Wed Nov 02, 2005 3:03 pm

From: Andrew Linington [mailto:alinington@numast.org] On Behalf Of Telegraph
Sent: 02 November 2005 15:23
To: Mark Payne
Subject: RE: October letter regarding Foreign Earnings Deduction.

Dear Mr Payne
Many thanks for your letter, which is of interest to us. I would certainly like to use it in the next Telegraph, because this is an important issue. However, the final decision on publication rests with the general secretary, so while I will recommend inclusion, he may over-rule! Can I ask whether we are able to use your name, or did you wish to have it as 'name supplied'?
Best wishes
Andrew Linington
Editor

-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Payne
Sent: 02 November 2005 15:07
To: Telegraph
Subject: October letter regarding Foreign Earnings Deduction.


Dear Sirs,

Please find below my comments regarding the letter regarding 'Seafarers tax is being abused' published in your October edition. Whilst I appreciate that as I am no longer a NUMAST member you may not wish to publish this, I do believe you should quantify your statement and retract your comments, as legislation states that if you are employed and working on a ship, then you are a seafarer, regardless of capacity.

I look forward to your reply,

Thanks and best regards,

Mark Payne. DipHS, MRICS, MCSE
Member of the Hydrographic Society.
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Vixen
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Tue Nov 08, 2005 3:46 pm

Hmmmmmmm.......Big Can...........worms........being opened.......
springs to mind.

Wonder if their legal eagles went over it before it got into print? ... pretty contentious comments!
Mon frere (who just happens to be a lawyer!) was most amused....
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marky9074
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Wed Nov 30, 2005 2:03 pm

And the debate goes on......
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Vixen
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Wed Nov 30, 2005 3:44 pm

Oh dear......why do I get the impression this one is going to drag on and on and on and on............
Hmm, funny how my last tax return is being scrutinised then!! Despite providing the IR with large amounts of recycled trees etc .....and I've got nothing to hide!

Can't wait to see the next instalment !
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marky9074
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Fri Jan 06, 2006 12:29 am

I see there was no mention of 'foreign earnings deduction' in this months NUMAST Telegraph magazine. Hopefully this has now died a death....

Mark
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