Scott advises in all areas of revenue law and practice.
He has a strong reputation for being accessible and easy to work with and for giving clear, straight-forward advice. He is highly regarded for his ‘technical knowledge and thoroughness of preparation’ and for being ‘very commercially aware’ (see Professional Recommendations below).
He is regularly instructed in tax disputes, including professional negligence, and has a wealth of advocacy experience dealing with tax appeals in the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal, professional negligence actions, and Judicial Review. He has appeared in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
Recent work has included:
- Intellectual Property: Regularly instructed on investigations into R & D relief claims under the SME scheme, in particular expenditure and subcontracted R & D activities. He has advised on corporate and individual tax issues relating to the exploitation, transfer and disposal of IP rights, as well as patent box relief.
Scott is joint author of the chapter “Taxation” in THE CITMA/CIPA Trade Mark Handbook (published by Sweet & Maxwell), a leading Trade Mark practitioner’s work.
- Private Client, IHT and Estate Planning
- Regularly instructed on private client matters, including in relation to wills and trusts, partnerships, family-owned businesses and investment companies. In particular, he has advised on IHT, settlement provisions (s. 621 ITTOIA), business property relief (including on trading status), CGT, SDLT and VAT.
- Drafting and advising more widely on matters relating to trust instruments, variations, change of trustees, appointments, assignments, termination of trust, discharge and distribution, wills.
- Agricultural holdings. He has particular experience advising on agricultural holdings, farming businesses and partnerships, including tax planning issues and availability of agricultural property relief.
- Non-resident settlements. Regularly instructed in relation to non-resident settlements, protected settlements (tainting), and valuation issues.
- Has advised on residence and domicile, including status and the application of the remittance basis to individual cases.
- Has experience advising on the taxation of life assurance.
- He has been instructed in Bona Vacantia matters.
- Employment taxes (Including IR35):
- IR35/off-payroll working rules and employment status. Instructed on planning issues and in disputes.
- Internationally-mobile employees. Has advised on tax residence, PAYE and social security, application of double tax treaties,permanent establishment and pay and incentives (including salary sacrifice arrangements, detached duty relief and the Optional Remuneration Rules).
- Disguised remuneration. In particular, planning advice and transaction support. Instructed in avoidance investigations and disputes (EBTs, EFRBS, and bonus schemes), including professional negligence (has acted in claims against accountants, tax advisers and IFAs).
- Incentives. Planning advice and drafting in relation to Heath Care trusts, Car Ownership Schemes, salary sacrifice and bonus arrangements.
- Regularly instructed on issues arising in relation to HMRC investigations. He has extensive experience in litigating challenges to HMRC’s collection and management powers; follower and accelerated payment notices (APNs); and Penalties.
- He has advised in several complex COP9 fraud investigations
- He has advised on compliance with Information Notices (including Data Protection).
- He has been instructed in Closure Notice applications, including a number of recent enquiries involving offshore settlements.
- He has represented clients at meetings with HMRC and assisted in negotiations which have culminated in favourable settlements.
- Proceeds of Crime. He has been instructed in numerous Civil Recovery matters challenging National Crime Agency tax investigations and tax assessments. Notable case: Chadwick (as trustee in bankrupty for Braniffe) v National Crime Agency  UKFTT 656 (TC);  BPIR 1429.
VAT: Instructed in cases involving the interpretation of EU directives, fiscal neutrality, and place of supply. Recently he has acted in an appeal involving the Option to Tax Land in connection with a high-value development project.
Recent VAT case of note:Intelligent Money Limited v HMRC  UKFTT 148 (TC) on the issue of the supply of fees paid to the administrator of a Self-invested Personal Pension (SIPP) business.
Duties: He has been instructed in a range of customs duties appeals (warehousing, wholesalers, and hydrocarbon) in the tax tribunal and in challenges to seizure/forfeiture of imported goods in the Magistrates’ Courts.
Scott was appointed to the Attorney General’s Regional Panel of Counsel (2011 – 2015) and reappointed (Panel A) (2016 – 2021). He was routinely instructed in a wide range of tax, pensions, employment and social security work.
“Taxation”, THE CITMA/CIPA Trade Mark Handbook (published by Sweet & Maxwell), Ch. 118
Contributes Tax and Pensions Case Summaries and Commentary to LexisNexis PSL.
Directories - Professional Recommendations
Scott has been consistently top ranked in Chambers and Partners’ UK Bar Guide and the Legal 500 for Tax.
Advice and client-care
He is noted as being “very approachable and easy to work with. His advice on complicated subjects is clear and easily understood” (Legal 500 - 2023). He has been praised for “giving practical advice” and as being “trusted as a safe pair of hands” (Chambers & Partners – 2021). He has a reputation for giving “clear advice” which is “easy to action, pragmatic and straightforward” (Legal 500 - 2021) and for being “efficient and hard-working” and “responsive to what solicitors and clients need” (Chambers & Partners - 2012).
Chambers & Partners (2023) note as his strengths that he "has a very cool, calm head; he is unflappable” and that he “gets his teeth into the work and gets to grips with the facts. He presents clearly to the court."
He is recommended as being “really knowledgeable and deploys that knowledge well" (Chambers & Partners – 2022). He has been noted as having a “technical knowledge and thoroughness of preparation and attention to detail [that] was first-rate”, as being “trusted with some serious work” and as someone who “manages to get the balance right between being technical whilst being very commercially aware” (Chambers & Partners – 2019).
He has been described as “…consistently impressing with his clear grasp of accountancy matters, attention to detail and ability to make cogent arguments in favour of his client.” His practice takes in general corporate advisory work and litigation. Personal tax and VAT are also key areas of strength. Clients enthusiastically comment that he “is always well prepared and has the ability to think around contentious points.” (Chambers & Partners – 2011). Also, that “he is experienced in VAT and is user-friendly.” (Chambers & Partners – 2020), “recommended for pensions” (Legal 500 – 2012; Chambers & Partners – 2020) and for employment (Legal 500 – 2023).
Education, Professional Memberships and Appointments
Revenue Bar Association
Chancery Bar Association
Northern Chancery Bar Association
Diplock Scholar, Middle Temple. Pupillage – Lincoln’s Inn (1996 – 1997); Tax, Pensions and Employment lawyer at Hammonds (1997 – 2000); Clifford Chance (2000 – 2002); and Wedlake Bell (2002 – 2004). Tenancies at Exchange Chambers (since 2004) and Temple Tax Chambers (since 2008).
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