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This is a response by the Tax Law Review Committee of the Institute for Fiscal Studies to the invitation to comment on the questions raised in the consultation paper on civil partnerships, published on 30 June 2003.

The Tax Law Review Committee was set up by the IFS in autumn 1994 to ask whether the tax system was working as intended, efficiently and without imposing unnecessary burdens. Its role is to keep under review the state and operation of tax law in the UK, which it does by selecting particular topics for study. It does not seek to question Government policy as such but to look at whether existing arrangements achieve the policy in a satisfactory and efficient way.