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Updated on 9 January 2024

What we do

LITRG is part of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, which is an educational charity. Since 1998, LITRG has been working to improve the policy and processes of the tax, tax credits and associated welfare systems for the benefit of people on low incomes. 

Content on this page:

Our mission

Through the Low Incomes Tax Reform Group (LITRG), the Chartered Institute of Taxation’s aim is to help those who are unable to afford to pay for tax advice by:

  • providing information on the tax system and related welfare benefits, and
  • by working to make the system more equitable and accessible for people’s needs.

Mission statement

Target for help and information those least able in the community to afford to pay for advice and make a real difference to their understanding of the systems of taxation and related benefits whilst working to make them more equitable and accessible for their needs.

Who we aim to help

We primarily focus our efforts on information and tax matters affecting those least able to afford professional advice. This includes people who are claiming welfare benefits who have to navigate the complexities of the tax and benefits systems – quite often with some degree of overlap.

Our work also encompasses some areas of law affecting those who may not be on a low income but who are often unrepresented and unaccustomed to taking tax advice. This is particularly where people inadvertently fall into non-compliance with complicated tax rules, such as the high income child benefit charge.

We have also seen a growing trend in recent years for people to be unwittingly drawn into new areas of non-compliance, such as those working in the gig economy who may have set up limited companies. Without a full understanding of the obligations resulting from these arrangements, the unrepresented can find themselves having to unpick multiple years of non-compliance. Our remit therefore extends to helping to educate people about various types of arrangement involving limited companies.

Our work – providing information

Website guidance

“I just wanted to say a big thank you for the comprehensive information on your website which has helped me to better understand how to complete my tax returns. The older I get the more difficult I find it to do two sets of self-employment tax calculations and your explanations have helped me to bring a bit of order to my chaos!” – Feedback from a LITRG website user, October 2023

Our guidance materials cover tax, National Insurance contributions and related benefits such as universal credit. We want to reach as many people as we can to help people understand these areas, their obligations and entitlements. We continue to evolve the website and reach a wide audience.

400 +

Number of pages of tax guidance on the LITRG website

5 million +

Number of website visitors in 2023

8 million

The LITRG website had almost 8 million page views in 2023

The tax guides are grouped by tax topic, as follows:

  While we aim to provide much helpful guidance on this website, we recognise that it will not answer everyone’s questions. Much of our information is provided to supplement government information. This website should not be taken to reflect the entirety of tax law. For more information, please see our Legal page.

For information on where to go for official tax guidance, or individual advice or assistance please see: Getting help with tax

Feedback on our website materials is always welcomed. Please get in touch. 

Contact us

News

As well as our main guidance materials on tax, National Insurance contributions and related benefits such as universal credit, we publish regular news updates on areas of interest to our website readers.

You can register to receive our news updates.

We often base these on real life experiences, so we are always interested to hear about the problems members of the public have encountered. 

If you would like to share your experiences to help inform our work, please get in touch.

Contact us

Press and media

In pursuit of our goal to educate the public in taxation matters more widely, we often engage with the press and media – writing articles, talking to journalists about current issues and appearing on radio and television.

For more, see our press releases page and media centre.

Working with other advisers

LITRG does not help individuals with their taxes. However, we do work with other charitable advice services who do offer direct help to members of the public. We do this by, for example, giving presentations and training.

We also provide online support for advisers via our award-winning revenuebenefits website. This website is supported by funding from HMRC. It includes detailed guidance, legislation, resources and policy documents relating to aspects of universal credit which relate to the tax system, tax credits and their transition to universal credit, child benefit and national minimum wage.

Our work – improving the system

Tax and related welfare laws and their respective administrative systems are complex. They are also not always joined up. These factors can make life difficult for those we try to help.

LITRG works extensively with HMRC, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), HM Treasury, Revenue Scotland, Scotland Office, the Welsh Government, and the Welsh Revenue Authority as well as other government departments, local authorities and devolved administrations.

Our activities include:

  • Encouraging government agencies, primarily HMRC, to produce the very best information for all taxpayers, especially people on low incomes.
  • Analysing the interaction between the tax, tax credits and benefit systems to understand potential interactions and how changes in one system may have an effect elsewhere.
  • Responding to consultations and requests for evidence from government departments and parliamentary committees. You can find our responses on our submissions page.
  • Researching particular tax areas that may be giving cause for concern and writing reports recommending change.
  • Examining Finance Bills and other tax legislation for provisions which may adversely affect the low-income population, providing briefings on the legislation’s effect on this group and proposing alternatives.
  • Monitoring operational developments within HMRC, DWP and other related government departments which may affect those on low incomes.
  • Sitting on numerous tax and benefit consultative groups and putting forward the perspective of those who cannot afford to pay for advice.
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