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Tax Simplification

The Issue

The UK has an overly complicated tax system. Small businesses often face high costs and spend long hours meeting their tax obligations. Time and money we argue could be better spent running their businesses.

Our research shows 60 per cent of our members believe the tax system has a negative impact on their ability to invest and create jobs.

Action FSB have taken

  • We’ve regularly called on the Treasury to simplify the tax system.
  • We make recommendations to Government on how to simplify the current system, based on member’s evidence.
  • We want the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) to propose reforms to the tax system where our members encounter the greater complexity and costs.
  • We published “Taxing Times” in February 2018 that highlighted where small businesses found the tax system most inefficient and the fact they were spending, on average, over £6,000 on tax compliance.

Our Goal

We want the amount of time and money small businesses are spending meeting their tax obligations, to dramatically reduce. Making the tax system as easy as possible to use, at every part of the process, is fundamental in reaching this objective.

Achievements in...



  • In March 2015 the Chancellor announces plans for a single, digital tax account.
  • In July 2015 the OTS is made permanent in the Emergency Budget.
  • Also in July 2015, recommendations by the OTS to Government are put out for consultation, a step towards being introduced into the tax system.
Visit UK/Westminster section


  • We shaped the governance structures of Revenue Scotland, a new body set up to administer and collect devolved taxes, to ensure its systems are modern, transparent and easy to use for small businesses.
Visit Scotland section

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