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“Services to others is the rent you pay for your time here on earth.” Muhammad Ali

Big news of the moment is Google “agreeing” to pay £130m in back taxes as part of a deal with HMRC. What’s interesting about this is that it goes back to 2005 so you’re looking at £13m for each year, but considering they had sales of £3.8bn in Britain in 2013 does it seem like a fair amount to you?

I hope you’re still with me up to this point. Although a huge sum of money by anybody’s terms it doesn’t seem enough in comparison to how much they have made over the years. By admitting to using structures which allowed them to pay very little or zero rate in tax does this mean they should be let off lightly? I can only imagine that their agreement with HMRC means exactly that but it doesn’t send out the right message does it?

The government has promised to clamp down on organisations who avoid paying their fair share of tax but it shouldn’t be allowed to happen in the first place. Always be honourable in business and pay your fare share as these things tend to creep up on you and you won’t be seen in a favourable light – reputation is everything after all. I’m sure Google won’t be the first to hit the headlines over this as there are others out there and we know who they are don’t we.

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AIMS Accountants for Business are the largest independent association of professionally qualified accountants in the UK specialising in accountancy for small, local and independent businesses. AIMS are no ordinary accountants and we are more than just number crunchers!