Lewis Hamilton to receive knighthood ‘as Boris Johnson finds way around tax row’
Lewis Hamilton will become Sir Lewis Hamilton in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list, despite questions over his tax status.
The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has intervened to ensure Hamilton will be appropriately recognised for his achievements on and off the track.
Hamilton became a seven-time Formula 1 world champion this season by storming to victory in the Drivers’ Championship.
He won 11 of the 16 Grands Prix he competed in to finish 124 points ahead of team-mate Valtteri Bottas.
Hamilton was also vocal away from the track as he used his platform to raise awareness for the Black Lives Matter movement and to speak out against systematic racism.
With his contract renewal set to be announced in the coming days, he has vowed to continue racing and continue to use his voice to raise awareness in the fight against injustice.
Hamilton’s knighthood had been in doubt due to his tax status, as the world champion lives in Monaco when not flying around the world for various races.
For that reason, HMRC couldn’t properly vet his tax affairs, leading to some confusion over whether he could qualify for the honour.
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But Johnson was determined to see the 35-year-old recognised for his achievements and has added his name to the ‘Diplomatic and Overseas List’ as a result. Hamilton will become the first sportsman ever to be put on the overseas list.
Hamilton was awarded an MBE 12 years ago when he won his first-ever world title – then with McLaren.
The Sun claims Hamilton is still in the top 5,000 tax payers in the UK, despite his residence being the tax haven of Monaco.
Speaking back in 2017 when quizzed about his tax affairs, he insisted there was no problem.
Hamilton said: “What people don’t realise is I pay tax here but don’t earn all my money here.
“I race in 19 countries, so I earn my money in 20 different places and pay tax in several different places, and I pay a lot here as well.
“I’m contributing to the country. Not only that, I help keep a team of more than 1,000 people employed.”
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