Unexplained Wealth Orders– HMRC’s new nuclear weapon?


HMRC now has powers to apply for ‘Unexplained Wealth Orders’ (that is an order requiring an individual to explain where their wealth has come from).

To grant such an order, a judge of the High Court will need to be satisfied that the individual to whom the application relates is a politically exposed person, or there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that that person  (or someone connected with him/her) has been involved in serious crime (which includes tax evasion).

If a person cannot satisfactorily explain how they came by their assets, those assets will become recoverable property for the purposes of the civil recovery provisions of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

The Tax Litigation team at 11KBW can provide advice and assistance in relation to UWOs and any associated litigation.  For further details see: