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League players to be taxed out of Britain

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by Rex, Apr 3, 2009.

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  1. Rex

    Rex Well-Known Member

    +2,376 /60
    League players to be taxed out of Britain

    Stuart Honeysett and Brent Read | April 03, 2009
    Article from:  The Australian

    THE annual exodus of stars to the English Super League could be over following a crackdown by Britain's Inland Revenue on tax-free loopholes.

    The news has Australian club bosses and managers warning players deals in England could be in danger of losing their tax-free lump sums if Super League clubs are slugged with massive bills.

    England's Rugby Football League has been asked to begin talks with the tax authorities on behalf of its clubs, but has denied speculation any have been slapped with six-figure fines.

    "There's no way Castleford, and Wakefield and Hull KR and these clubs are going to pay the taxation department the money and then not take it off the players," an NRL club chief said.

    "I can assure you of that."

    If that is the case, then that could have serious ramifications for some former NRL players plying their trade for the aforementioned clubs.

    Brent Sherwin, Dean Widders and Sione Faumuina are at Castleford, Brad Drew at Wakefield, and Clint Newton and Michael Vella at Hull KR.

    It has been reported in The Guardian newspaper 10 of the 14 English Super League clubs could be targeted by Inland Revenue.

    A leading player manager foreshadowed a fight if a Super League club attempted to short-change a player to recoup its losses.

    "I think some clubs will do that but contractually that won't bond," the manager said.

    "They're all going to try it but ultimately they've got to fulfil their obligations."

    The problems stem from image rights agreements, which have seen some Super League clubs pay anywhere up to 40 per cent of a player's deal into an offshore account.

    As well as coming under scrutiny from Inland Revenue for this practice, there are also moves to reduce the image rights figure to only 10 per cent.

    A player lured to England on a pound stg. 100,000 ($207,000) a season deal would receive a pound stg. 60,000 salary while pound stg. 40,000 would be deposited into an offshore account.

    If the changes go ahead, pound stg. 90,000 a season would be the player's salary with only pound stg. 10,000 being put aside for the end of his stint.

    NRL chief executive David Gallop said the mooted tax changes, coupled with a reduction in the import quota and recent crackdown on visa restrictions, should help halt the overseas player drain.

    "It's further evidence that playing in the UK is not the easy option it once was and it seems likely we'll see less players taking up a contract there," Gallop said.

    The changes could have ramifications for Manly captain Matt Orford, who is off contract at season's end and the subject of interest from England.

    Orford will need to take a pay cut to remain at the Sea Eagles, but that could be a realistic option if Super League clubs are restricted from paying tax-free sums into off-shore accounts.

    Manly's talks with Orford have been hindered by the board-room brawl which has affected the club's start to the year.

    However, with peace restored at ownership level, a decision on Orford's future is likely to be fast-tracked.

    Orford will be critical if the club is to recover from its poor start to defend its title. Manly co-owner Max Delmege, who made peace with fellow owner Scott Penn at a board meeting on Wednesday night, believes another title is within Manly's grasp.

    "We'll win it," Delmege said. "We'll go back-to-back."

  2. The Wheel

    The Wheel Well-Known Member

    +2,756 /88
    Watch out Rex Dan will be on your case for not using the "submit articles' option for this
  3. KaZa

    KaZa Well-Known Member

    +327 /22
    off to the USA LEAGUE!!!!
  4. Rex

    Rex Well-Known Member

    +2,376 /60
    Oops.  Bleary-eyed mistake.
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