ESS occurs when a business either acquires, or gains access to, software that will assist it to under-report its sales, order to hide or reduce the value of individual transactions. If this sounds familiar to you, read on to learn why this is a bad business move.

Programming an electronic till to suppress the recording of sales amounts to tax evasion – and HMRC can impose some serious penalties on retailers who do this.

HMRC are initially seeking out the producers and promoters of electronic till software that can be used for electronic sales suppression (ESS). Once they find a software distributor that is selling ESS software they will track down all the businesses that have purchased the software. If HMRC discover that you have purchased ESS enabling tools they will send you a notice to remove the software from your tills within 30 days. Then, if you ignore that notice they can impose a penalty of up to £50,000.

To avoid such high penalties take extra care when purchasing or upgrading your till software. We advise checking the credentials of your software supplier and make sure you are buying an authentic product.

Get in touch today if you have questions regarding sales suppression or any other topic.