HMRC AUDITORS have hailed a self-employed man’s tax return as a masterpiece of contemporary fiction.
Painter and decorator Stephen Malley’s SA100 tax form reveals a sweeping tale of imaginary expenses, forgotten cash payments and pretending to live on a houseboat.
Auditor Julian Cook said: “Again and again Malley took the conventions of truth and flouted them. He had the vision to see expenses where others would never have dreamed of claiming them.
“It’s the War and Peace of tax returns. If you read just one self-assessment tax return for the fiscal year of 2014-15, make it this one.
“That’s what I told the Specialist Investigations Team anyway.”
However, Malley was oddly modest when he was asked to comment on his masterpiece by fraud prevention officers.
Malley said: “It’s totally autobiographical, everything in it really happened. Well 80 per cent of it at least, some of it comes from memory because I lost the receipts.”
The tax return is currently the subject of a bidding war between publishers, with Malley saying he will go with whoever can pay the advance cash-in-hand.