CICTAR’s latest report, launched in conjunction with the BBC’s Panorama, reveals details of how the UK’s largest care home operator shifted profits offshore to private investors, while appearing to report artificial losses allowing it to dramatically reduce or eliminate tax payments and justify millions more in government funding.
The report, which can be read below, found that the owners of operator HC-One siphoned millions in tax-free profits to the Cayman Islands during the pandemic, while receiving an additional £18.9m in government payments for COVID-19 costs. It also details how HC-One, which is heavily reliant on public funding, appears to have created a pattern of artificial losses over many years through dividends, lease payments and excessive interest on related party debt paid to offshore owners.
As the troubled social care sector recovers from the impact of COVID-19, the CICTAR report, Death, Deception & Dividends, calls for transparency and accountability before any proposed increases in public funding.
HC-One denies that the arrangements highlighted by the report have any impact on the quality of care. Their response can be read below.