Lord Sugar quizzed by MP over whether he paid tax on mega £390million dividend


LORD Sugar has been quizzed by an MP over whether he paid tax on a £390million dividend.

The Apprentice star, 75, pocketed the vast payment from his main holding firm last year.

The amount, one of the biggest made to a UK entrepreneur, would normally trigger a tax bill of up to £160million, the FT reported.

But the paper said it was not clear if Lord Sugar was still a UK resident for tax purposes after taking a leave of absence from the Lords in January.

Non-UK residents do not have to pay tax on dividends from UK companies.

Labour MP Margaret Hodge, chair of a parliamentary group on responsible tax, tweeted: “Alan Sugar is reported to have recently changed his tax status to be non-resident and paid himself a huge £390million dividend.

“As a non-resident he could avoid up to £160million in tax. If this is true, it is disgusting behaviour from a business icon, role model and lawmaker. Any comment, @Lord_Sugar?”

He did not reply.

His spokesman did not tell the FT if he was a UK resident for tax purposes — saying only he paid UK taxes.

They added: “We are instructed to tell you that Lord Sugar is a UK taxpayer and will remain so.”

Non-UK residents can only spend around 90 days here each year, meaning they cannot normally serve as MPs or in the Lords.

Instead they usually step down or take a leave of absence.

The FT said Lord Sugar had been paid the sum by Amshold Ltd as part of “financial arrangements over the past five years”.

The paper pointed to “a ­person familiar with Sugar’s finances”, who told the FT the arrangements included “plans for Sugar to give up his UK tax residency”.

In 2017, Lord Sugar tweeted a photo of his £58.6million tax bill he paid to HMRC.

He has previously said: “You’ve got to pay tax, it is as simple as that. I don’t want to live a life dodging taxmen.”

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