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bigduckontax, Accountant
Category: Tax
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My ex wife has been using my bank accounts to do her sole

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hi, my ex wife has been using my bank accounts to do her sole trading and has not declared for a few years. she is declaring it and and we are just divorced.
the tax bill is around £35000 and she has about £20000 savings.
she has declared that bank accounts and transactions are her trading
numbers and is being assessed on that.
to what extent will hmrc chase after me for the outstanding debts claiming it is my problem because it is my bank account name ?
because we were married at the time she was trading does that me responsible for her debt. my current accountant is advising me that i will be liable but i dont understand why when it is her self assessment.
Hello, I am Keith, one of the experts on Just Answer, and pleased to be able to help you with your question. Marriage in itself does not create a liability for your wife's debts. National Debtline advises: 'The law you refer to does not exist. This is because responsibility for a debt is not affected by whether or not someone is married, and marriage in itself does not create liability.What is relevant is whose name is ***** ***** agreement, as this is the person who will be legally liable for the debt. Therefore, a husband is not responsible for his wife's debts, or vice versa, if his name is ***** ***** the original credit agreement.' HMRC might well try to chase you for this debt, a standard try on, but tell them to take a running jump, politely and deny all responsibility for your wife's debts. I do hope that I have set your mind at rest on this matter.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
hi , can i just clarify this because it is important, when i mean trading i mean she has been receiving money and buying goods using my bank accounts . and there is profit and tax charge and etc.there is no agreement as such. just income tax.she has written to my accountant clearly stating that any money received in certain bank accounts are to do with her trading business and has nothing to do with me.Now, there is a tax /hmrc liability for this and it might be that she will be made bankrupt out of it but I want to be clear that hmrc will not chase me because the bank account is under my name.
It is clear that for convenience your wife was using your bank account with your permission to undertake her trading. Not, I may say, a good idea, but it is no use crying over spilled milk She is perfectly correct to itemise her trading using your bank account as she has done and perfectly proper to draw attention as to what was her business activity and what was you personal banking. Although HMRC will always try it on if they can and attempt to make you liable for your wife's debts they have no case and any Trustee in Bankruptcy can have no resource to your bank account either. To be on the safe side, it might be a good idea to change your bank account though!
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
thanks a lot. to be fair my accountant is a bookeeper and may not be well versed in tax. so i am going to forward our conversation to him, is there any last comment you want to add that i can send to him ? really appreciate your advice and will sleep easier tonight ? it does not make sense that i will liable for my ex wife tax liability.
Well it did make sense many years ago before the passing of The Married Women's Property Act, 1870. ! Just be prepared for an HMRC try on. I was in a meeting where an Inspector of Taxes demanded immediate settlement in cash of tax revenues which were not even due. Needless to say, he didn't get it, merely reported to his superiors and my company received an immediate withdrawal of the demand from the head of the office concerned. Please be so kind as to rate me before you leave the Just Answer site.
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