Barbara Angus appointed EY Global Tax Policy Leader

EY announces the appointment of Barbara Angus to the role of EY Global Tax Policy Leader. The EY global tax policy network of professionals advises companies and engages with governments on the development and implementation of policy initiatives in more than 140 jurisdictions across the globe. Based in Washington, DC, Barbara will focus on engagement with key policymakers and clients globally.

Barbara was previously Chief Tax Counsel for the Committee on Ways and Means of the U.S. House of Representatives, where she played an integral role in the development of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA), the most significant change to the US tax code in more than 30 years.

Kate Barton, EY Global Vice Chair – Tax, says:

“Today’s shifting tax landscape requires new levels of agility and preparedness as countries around the world undertake tax reform. Barbara’s deep knowledge of international tax law and direct hand in shaping the current US tax code give her a unique perspective to help clients comply with and apply the complexities of the laws in a rapidly changing global landscape. I’m thrilled to welcome Barbara back to EY at this time of incredible change.”

Congressman Kevin Brady (R-TX), the lead Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee, says:

“Few in Washington match Barbara’s intelligence, leadership and work ethic. Her efforts changed history, helping us create a tax code that works for families and Main Street businesses. I am so thankful for her guidance and friendship these past three years and wish her all the best in this next chapter – she will be missed dearly by our Committee.”

Barbara Angus, incoming EY Global Tax Policy Leader, says:

“Following US tax reform, as governments face revenue pressures in an ever-changing global economy, tax policy is being debated in jurisdictions around the world. It is critically important for companies to be actively engaged as developments play out across the countries where they do business. I am excited about the opportunity to be part of the global EY network, providing coordinated support to clients as they participate in the global tax policy dialogue and prepare for shifts in the global tax environment.”

HMRC finds a new legal head from Defra

HM Revenue and Customs has appointed a new general counsel, taking on the legal director of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Alan Evans will take on the top legal role at HMRC on 1 January 2019, advising on all aspects of tax law and leading its litigation team. He will also be a member of the tax agency’s executive committee.

Evans has built up a legal career spanning 30 years, including his former role as legal director at Defra, as well as stints as legal adviser to the Cabinet Officer and the European Commission.

Evans’ appointment was formally ratified by the Prime Minister Theresa May, following an “extensive” internal and external search.

Evans succeeds Gill Aitken, who stepped down in June to become registrar at the University of Oxford. Mid-June, David Bunting, a former legal director at HMRC and part of the UK Government-wide Border Delivery Group. filled the role on an interim basis while HMRC carried out an open recruitment process for a permanent replacement.

Aitken joined HMRC in 2014 to lead the Solicitor’s Office and legal services, advising HMRC and HM Treasury on all aspects of tax law and leading a large litigation practice safeguarding tax revenues.

HMRC’s chief executive Jon Thompson said he was “delighted” to welcome Evans “at a critical time for the department”. It is currently carrying out wide-ranging preparations for Brexit, including work to ensure it is ready handle the extra customs demands that will be needed in the event of a no-deal departure from the EU.

Tunisian lawyers take to the streets to protest proposed new taxes

Several thousand Tunisian lawyers demonstrated on Tuesday in front of the prime minister’s office, with some demanding his resignation as they escalated a protest against widely unpopular new taxes that will hit them and other high-end professions.

Under a budget draft approved by parliament’s finance committee on Monday, lawyers will pay tax of between about $8 to $20 on each file they present to court. The levy is part of austerity measures proposed for 2017 by a government under pressure from international lenders to cut the fiscal deficit.

According to a Reuters witness some 3,500 of the country’s 8,500 lawyers joined the protest in Tunis which, coming on top of an open-ended strike that the profession launched on Monday, will test the government’s resolve to implement its reforms.