Government launches new tax app

Free tax calculator app allows people to work out how much tax they pay

The government has launched a new online tax calculator, which allows people to work out how much tax they pay and how the government spends it.

The free app is compatible with iPhones, iPads, Android phones and is also available on the HMRC website.

HM Treasury said that the launch comes as new research, commissioned by the government, showed that more than half of taxpayers don’t know how much income tax and national insurance they pay in a year.

The government hopes that the new calculator will make it easier for taxpayers to see how much they can expect to pay. It said it was also an important step towards making the system more transparent and open.

The research into personal tax transparency was carried out as part of the government’s consultation on ways in which people could more easily access information on their personal taxes.

It found that although 70% of those who receive bank statements said that they always check their transactions, just 26% of taxpayers checked how much tax they have paid, and only 10% would be able to put an exact figure on it, if asked.

Treasury minister David Gauke said: “We think it is right that people know how much tax they pay and what the government spends it on. At the moment, over half of taxpayers do not know how much income tax and national insurance they pay in a year. Our new tax calculator will allow them to find out, which is a big step towards a more transparent, 21st century system.”

This article is published by Guardian Professional. For weekly updates on news, debate and best practice on public sector IT, join the Guardian Government Computing network here.

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