Would you like a receipt with that?

Written on 16 February 2015

I cannot say I was surprised to see on the news this morning, a story about Ed Balls claiming you should always get a written receipt, even if just paying for a small household job such as cleaning or gardening. Mr Balls, the shadow chancellor, claimed that it was important to have a written record for everything because it was 'the right thing to do'.

So this was a little over-zealous considering that all UK tax obligations remain with the taxpayer themselves. Cash payments are legal, whether you are paying someone to do an odd-job or even for a service on a regular basis. The person you are paying is the one who is responsible and should keep proper records so that they can pay the correct about of Income Tax (and VAT if their turnover breaches the threshold).

It is unsure whether Mr Balls is suggesting that cash-run businesses are dodging tax or whether there is an implication that everyone is out to avoid paying their dues, but either way, his statement has caused a bit of a ruckus amongst politicians.