Scott v HMRC: Principles, Policies and Interpretation

7 Pages Posted: 1 Nov 2018

See all articles by Stephen Daly

Stephen Daly

King's College London - The Dickson Poon School of Law

Date Written: October 23, 2018


The separation of the context from the content of words in a statute is one principle of statutory construction which underpinned the judgment of the Upper Tribunal (UT) in Scott v HMRC. The other principle is that, when searching for the purpose of words in a statute, the tribunals and courts will seek to interpret legislation in a manner which brings coherence to the law. When these two principles are combined, as demonstrated by HMRC’s success before both the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) and the UT in Scott v HMRC, a taxpayer will struggle to convince a tribunal or court that a broad policy goal mentioned in a ministerial statement should be used in order to produce what approaches incoherence across statutory provisions. Further, the case illustrates the inefficiency of the limitation on public law issues being heard by the FTT.

Note: This material was first published by the British Tax Review and is reproduced by agreement with the Publishers.

Keywords: Tax, Statutory Interpretation

Suggested Citation

Daly, Stephen, Scott v HMRC: Principles, Policies and Interpretation (October 23, 2018). (2018) 4 British Tax Review 381, King's College London Law School Research Paper No. 19-7, Available at SSRN:

Stephen Daly (Contact Author)

King's College London - The Dickson Poon School of Law ( email )

Somerset House East Wing
London, WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics