Tax clampdown in building industry

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Tax cheats working in the building and construction industries will be targeted in a new crackdown this year.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) said the clampdown will put several hundred thousand tradespeople under the spotlight, such as roofers, window fitters, bricklayers, carpenters and joiners. The initiative, which will use internet searches to track down cheats, will build on similar campaigns aimed at plumbers and electricians, HMRC said.

HMRC is also launching a new drive to clear up missing tax returns, initially focusing on high earners who fail to complete tax returns and who are liable to pay tax at the highest rates.

It will also target direct selling and people who should be paying tax on income they earn from buying and selling goods directly to others, or from the commission on these sales.