Gift Aid Relief – Charity Shell Schemes

We have a leading team of specialist lawyers with many years of experience advising investors on claims arising out of their involvement in a variety of failed tax mitigation and avoidance schemes including, in particular, Charity Shell schemes.

We represent investors in some of the most high-profile schemes including Chartersea Limited which was the subject of Tribunal Decision Green v HMRC.

HMRC successfully challenged this scheme, used by Nicholas Green and designed by Manchester based company Afortis Limited, at the first tier tax tribunal in the early part of 2014 as part of its campaign to crackdown on abusive schemes.

HMRC says the ruling and its impact on similar schemes could ensure over £35m of tax is repaid by investors.

Having relied upon the advice of financial or tax advisers, investors who may now be facing financial ruin have the option to seek reimbursement for any unexpected tax liabilities from those advisers. This is typically met by that adviser’s insurance.

It is crucial for investors to act as swiftly as possible and before their potential claims become time-barred. After that time has passed, they will not be able to recover their losses.

It is also vital for investors to notify their advisers of their claim at the earliest possible opportunity to avoid the insurance cover being lost.

There are still some, more limited, options open to investors even where their adviser is no longer trading.

FS Legal’s widely renowned tax negligence team has a national reputation in this field having successfully recovered multi-million-pound settlements for clients who have been exposed to negligent tax advice from accountants, tax advisers and financial advisers. Our team has been ranked as a leading law firm in this field by Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners and are frequently consulted by the specialist press including the Financial Times, the Times, Citywire. We have also worked with the BBC and Channel 4 on Dispatches and Panorama.

We work closely with a number of the ‘big four’ accountancy firms, who recognise our specific expertise and refer their clients to us directly so that we can together meet our clients’ needs by dealing with both HMRC and their former advisers. In many cases, HMRC may have opened an enquiry, issued a closure notice, issued a tax demand, an Accelerated Payment Notice (APN), Partner Payment Notice (PPN) or taken other action to recover sums from our clients.

FS Legal have successfully used the Judicial Review process to prevent HMRC from issuing bankruptcy proceedings against participants in tax mitigation schemes.

Unlike many commercial firms, we do not act for banks, insurers or other large institutions. This allows us to represent clients with disputes against well known high street banks. We act solely on our clients’ behalf with transparency and without the restraints caused by conflicts of interest.

Our team lead cutting-edge and high profile litigation including reported cases which go on to change the case law in this country. In particular FS Legal acted in a £6M claim against tax advisers and accountants arising out of failed tax mitigation schemes which was one of the very first such cases to be brought before the Courts.

To discuss your specific circumstances and potential claim in more detail please call our Manchester office.

We provide expert lawyers recommended and recognised as ‘Leading Individuals’ by Chambers & Partners who note the firm’s “pragmatic, practical and efficient approach” and “determined litigators with a very good sector knowledge” Legal 500 notes “FS Legal is a firm that punches well above its weight and is particularly strong in the areas of financial services, pensions and tax schemes” adding that the team has “a deservedly good reputation for providing a top-quality, commercial service“.

To view the Firm’s Commercial Litigation Directory Rankings please click here for Chambers & Partners and click here for Legal 500.


We understand that, whether it’s a personal or business matter, funding is a key concern. We have a variety of funding options available to seek to remove the risk and cost from our clients. Unlike most firms, we are able to operate around 90% of our cases on a contingent basis.

Because professional negligence cases are intricate and require specialist knowledge, we offer a free, no obligation, and confidential advice service to all our new clients.


To view our press coverage, including commentary in the Financial Times, please follow the below links:

FT – ‘Tsunami’ of claims after crackdown creates £5bn tax bill

FT – Taxmen challenge film fund partners

FT – Stars face big bill as tax plan backfires

FT – Film backers face unhappy tax ending

Mail on Sunday – Some of Britains biggest celebrities urged claim failed tax avoidance schemes

FT – Tax avoidance compensation could hit advisers

FS Legal Solicitors LLP Chambers Ranked in UK 2024
The Legal 500 United Kingdom Top Tier 2024