Without a doubt the question I'm asked most frequently when I start to act for someone new to the adult entertainment industry is "How do I describe my business to HMRC?". And I fully understand why.

How many people trust the Government nowadays?

What is to stop HMRC disclosing your occupation to a future employer or building society when you're applying for a mortgage at some stage in the future?

The second question is easier to answer than the first!

I am the first to criticise HMRC when it comes to customer service but I have never criticised them over taxpayer confidentiality and I never will. They never disclose information to third parties. Even your own accountant at times!

Jolyon Maugham QC, a tax specialist, states very clearly in his blog

The Commissioners for Revenue and Customs Act 2005 Section 18 imposes strict duties of confidentiality on HMRC. Breaching them is a criminal offence punishable by up to two years in prison. Perhaps unsurprisingly in the circumstances, officers at HMRC tend to take a conservative view of the limitations imposed upon them by the duty of confidentiality.

Despite what you may have been told or heard HMRC will not fine you if use a "slightly" different description for your business. I'd love to see HMRC argue over a job description if everything else on the return is correct. They'd make fools of themselves.

My advice is if you're happy describing your business as an escort or a webcammer then do it. If not, there is always another description. I have clients who use the following

Beauty therapist
Internet service provider (for a webcammer)
Film model
French teacher (yes seriously)
Sports coach
Luxury companion
Private companion
Life coach


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