Lorraine Kelly has addressed her 2019 tax tribunal case, saying: “I don’t want people to think I would do anything to get out of paying what I should be paying.”
The TV host made headlines when she won a £1.2 million battle with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), with a judge saying the Scottish star “presents a persona of herself”, agreeing she was not an ITV employee and instead was hired to perform “the role of a friendly, chatty and fun personality”.
Kelly, 62, told The Guardian she was happy to address the case “because I’ve never got my chance to put my side of the story across”.
She added: “I’m a firm believer in the NHS, a firm believer in better education and housing and looking after people who can’t help themselves.
“I was brought up in a very working-class background where you pay your dues.”
Kelly’s on-screen break came in 1984 when she joined TV-am, and since then, she has become a familiar face on the small screen and has presented her hugely popular daily talk show Lorraine since 2010.
She told the paper she could “live with” the mirth prompted by the ruling, which suggested she was essentially playing the role of Lorraine Kelly.
The HMRC had argued that Kelly is effectively an ITV employee and should be subject to income tax and National Insurance payments.
But the judge ruled she was hired for her services as an entertainer and was in control of both her working day and her show.
“We were satisfied that Ms Kelly presents a persona of herself, she presents herself as a brand and that is the brand ITV sought when engaging her,” the judge said.
“All parts of the show are a performance, the act being to perform the role of a friendly, chatty and fun personality.”
Kelly told The Guardian: “Now that I can laugh at.
“It was, sadly, a bit of a misinterpretation but I knew what (the judge) meant.
“Obviously, it’s given people great hilarity and I can live with that.”