ESS tools are defined as any tool, or combination of tools, which are capable of suppressing electronic sales records, such as those required under legislation relating to tax records. These tools are often bolted on to electronic point of sale (EPoS) software in order to help users reduce the value of sales through their tills.
With ESS tools in use, sales processed through the till give the impression that they have been recorded as normal, however, the end of day report is deliberately manipulated to reduce report takings, therefore consciously hiding true sales and the resulting tax that is due.
HMRC’s new schedule, as part of the Finance Act 2022, outlines that any business or individual involved in the supply, recommendation or use of ESS tools now faces fines of up to £50,000 and criminal investigations.
“The overwhelming majority of businesses are paying their taxes and rightly want to see HMRC stepping in where needed to ensure a level playing field for all. Tax crime does not stand still and neither do we – the new powers available to HMRC allow them to clamp down on ESS and help recover tax revenues to fund our public services.” Financial Secretary to the Treasury, Lucy Frazer.
ICRTouch has never and will never support the use of ESS tools alongside its EPoS software and urges all individuals using, supplying or promoting ESS to contact HMRC via their online disclosure facility.