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Craven v White (HL)

[1988] 3 All E.R. 495

Case summary last updated at 23/02/2020 21:30 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case Craven v White (HL)

·   Lord Oliver
·   I found some difficulty in following the intellectual process by which, in contradistinction to the cases which preceded it, Furniss reconstructed the transaction which had taken place in that case in a way which disapplied the statutory consequences which, on the face of them, attached to the intermediate transfer which the special commissioners had found as a fact was a genuine transaction.
·   Judges are not legislators and if a decision contradicts express statutory consequences declared by Parliament to attach to a transaction which has been found to have taken place, that can be justified only because, as a matter of construction of the statute, the court has ascertained that that which has taken place is not, within the meaning of the statute, the transaction to which those consequences attach. 
·   It seems to me, therefore, that Furniss rests not upon some fancied principle that anything done with a mind to minimising tax is to be struck down but upon the premise that the intermediate transfer, whose statutory consequences would otherwise have resulted in payment of tax being postponed, did not, upon the true construction of the Finance Act 1965, constitute a disposal attracting the consequences set out in the Act.

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