Councils using ‘Intelligence’ to track down low EPC properties and fine £5,00015:08 PM, 29th March 2021
About 2 weeks ago 36
Chris Cooper and Steve Bolton have provided this official update on the Judicial Review of Clause 24 – “Alice in Wonderland Tax Grab”. Please share.
The story so far
The initial phase of funding for our Judicial Review of Clause 24 “Alice in Wonderland” Tax Grab was completed in a matter of days. We hit our £50,000 target in little more than a week over the Christmas break! The response has been excellent, and indicates the level of anger felt by landlords across the UK for this unfair, unintelligent and retrospective tax grab.
We have managed to secure some very positive PR and media support. The Telegraph, Times, FT, Guardian, Mail and many trade publications have run with the story and several TV and audio interviews have been given. Behind the scenes we have been speaking and working with a London based PR agency, speaking with influencers in the industry and pulling together a team of mentors and non-legal advisors.
One of our mentors has been fighting a Judicial Review on a retrospective tax since 2007, with hundreds of others backing the process. He has shared with us what works and what doesn’t and we have already actioned some of his ideas by agreeing to add one of the best European Law experts to the team of lawyers. Jeremy Gilley, the Founder of Peace One Day, is a master at awareness and influencing campaigns and he has been sharing his advice with us and is there to provide on-going support.
Industry-wise, Steve has so far spoken with Directors at the British Property Federation, the National Landlords Association and is due to speak to Directors of the Residential Landlords Association this week. The goal has been to work together and we hope to be able to make some positive announcements over the next week.
This week we are hoping to receive the legal Opinion. In other words, the formal written advice from our lawyers that gives us clarity on the specific lines of attack we can use for the Judicial Review and their opinion on likely chances of success. We will share an overview of this but cannot release the finer details otherwise we will lose ‘legal privilege’. This could mean that the Government could access our information and would then be able to better defend themselves against our lines of attack.
Our legal team will pursue the case as far as the Judicial Review process will allow, including preparing detailed legal Opinion, issuing a pre-action protocol letter and making an application to a judge for Judicial Review. The legal team are also pursuing other options, should an application be unsuccessful.
Part of the legal analysis will include exploring an angle, which will benefit landlords who are either already incorporated, or will incorporate going forward with new transactions. This is an excellent development because it means that those landlords will also benefit by supporting our campaign.
What else can you do now to help?
If you haven’t done so already, please like the Facebook page for this campaign – https://www.facebook.com/clause24/. This page is a central source of all media articles and support provided by other organisations with a vested interest in the campaign. It is also where we post interim updates. In case you don’t know, by liking the page, any posts from this campaign will show up in your newsfeed.
There are still far too many landlords who are unaware of how the new measures could destroy their future financial plans and pension provision and push them into a higher rate tax band. Please continue to spread the word and encourage as many people as possible to read the campaign page: https://www.crowdjustice.co.uk/case/clause24/
By visiting our CrowdJustice campaign page, and clicking on the sign up for updates via CrowdJustice link at the top of the page, people can receive regular updates about the campaign. Please encourage people to do so – even if they have not yet been able to pledge.
We are currently designing a questionnaire to be sent out to everyone that pledged. We really need to start mobilising resources and get a better understanding of who we are representing and why. We are developing a strategy document and a campaign plan beyond phase one. To be able to better shape the thinking and ensure we maximise the power of our community, please complete the short survey when it gets sent across to you. Your data and all answers will be kept in strictest confidence.
That’s all for now. Thanks again for your help and please keep spreading the word. Our next two updates will include a progress report on the legal side and the survey monkey questionnaire. Expect both within the next seven days.
News produced by Reuters TV – full article click here
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