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Mini-Budget delivers some big changes

New Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng found himself firmly in the spotlight as he delivered a mini-Budget that saw the pound crashing to a new 37-year low. The winners and losers were left to reflect on the announcements as the Chancellor delivered a package of tax cuts worth £45 billion in an attempt to boost the UK’s ...

Relief scheme takes the heat off energy bills

Businesses have been given a helping hand by the Government to cope with the dramatic rise in energy prices as a new winter of discontent looms. Through a new Energy Bill Relief Scheme, the Government will provide a discount on wholesale gas and electricity prices for all non-domestic customers (including all UK businesses, the voluntary ...

Mini-Budget 23 September 2022

A summary of the main tax changes that will impact the liability of individuals and business owners from April 2023 are: • A reduction in the Income Tax basic rate from 20% to 19%. • The abolition of the 45% additional Income Tax rate. • The cancellation of the proposed increase in Corporation Tax. The ...

Businesses face rebranding following Queens death

Heinz. Cadbury. Coca-Cola. Being household names isn’t the only thing they have in common. All three were awarded the Royal Warrant, and were able to display the Royal Arms on their products. Following the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, these companies – and around 600 more – will have to stop using the ...

Prepare your business for the next big challenge

Business owners could be facing a difficult few months as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite alongside the predicted winter recession. After overcoming the difficulties associated with COVID-19, it seems there hasn’t been much opportunity to steady the ship before the next tidal wave of challenges washes over us. The worst thing businesses can do ...

We need to do things differently says Chancellor

In a busy week for Prime Minister Liz Truss and her newly formed cabinet, her Chancellor has had a meeting with market leaders to set out the Government’s new, pro-growth economic approach. Kwasi Kwarteng began by acknowledging the extraordinary challenges that families and businesses across the UK are facing this winter, exacerbated by Putin’s barbaric ...

Tough new rules to protect against cyber attacks

Broadband and mobile companies will be forced to adhere to tough new rules to help protect the UK from cyber attacks. The new Government regulations will come into force in October and will be among the strongest in the world. They will provide much tougher protections from cyber threats that could cause network failure or ...

Energy bill support for families and businesses

New Prime Minister Liz Truss made the ongoing energy crisis her priority after taking the keys to No 10. She has revealed her plan to support people and businesses with their energy bills with a new Energy Price Guarantee alongside the lifting of a ban on the controversial practice of fracking. Truss aims to tackle ...

Bungling bundling bank to repay businesses

NatWest has found itself in hot water after forcing hundreds of business customers to open fee-paying current accounts in order to secure a loan. The high street bank is now having to refund around £600,000 to small and medium-sized business after legal direction from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). The CMA found that NatWest ...

Tax Diary September/October 2022

1 September 2022 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 November 2021. 19 September 2022 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 September 2022. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 September 2022) 19 September 2022 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Rent-a-room Relief

The Rent a Room Scheme lets you earn up to a threshold of £7,500 per year tax-free from letting out furnished accommodation in your home. This is halved if you share the income with your partner or someone else. You can let out as much of your home as you want. The tax exemption is ...

Two thousand pounds tax free income

There is no tax to pay on trading income or earnings from land and property as long as the income from each source does not exceed £1,000. Trading allowance The trading allowance is a tax exemption of up to £1,000 a year for individuals with trading income from: self-employment. casual services, for example, babysitting or ...

Inflation

To keep your earnings in sync with increases in prices is becoming progressively difficult. Most individuals – whether employed or self-employed – would find it unrealistic to secure pay rises (if employed) or price increases (if in business) unless the demand for their goods or services was high. If most taxpayers cannot match price increases ...

Change to capital gains on separation or divorce

Under present legislation any transfer of assets between couples who are separating, or divorcing are free of any Capital Gains Tax (CGT) liability as long as the assets are transferred during the year of separation/divorce. This places undue pressure on couples to complete these transfers in time to qualify for the CGT exemption. Based on ...

UK proposes digital deal to support Ukraine recovery

Ukraine has been offered a helping hand by the UK Government to rebuild its economy in the wake of the Russian invasion. Talks between the two nations have led to plans to pursue a new digital trade agreement to help Ukrainian businesses trade more effectively with the UK. International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan met officials ...

Doubling up leaseholders to receive refund

Thousands of homeowners who have been paying doubled ground rent on their leasehold properties are to receive a refund. Many of the 5,000 households throughout the UK affected by ‘doubling clauses’ will receive a windfall and will see more money in their pockets each month as ground rents return to their original amount. The announcement ...

Starling flies to the top of banking polls

Starling Bank has proved unstoppable in the latest large scale banking surveys, coming top for business and personal accounts. Personal and small business current account holders were asked how likely they would be to recommend their provider to a friend, relative or other business. The surveys also covered the quality of online and mobile provision, ...

Broadband bill cuts help families stay connected

Struggling families have been given the welcome news that their broadband bills could be cut as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite. Millions of low-income households could be eligible for cheaper deals with internet service providers being encouraged by the Government to offer ‘social tariffs’. A new service, which goes live this week and is ...

Paying your tax late? Be prepared for higher interest

Late taxpayers will be facing higher interest rates from this week following the rise in the Bank of England base rate. HMRC’s interest rates for late payment are linked to the base rate that was increased to 1.75% from 1.25% earlier this month. The changes will come into effect on: 15 August 2022 for quarterly ...

Beautician gave Bounce Back Loan to sister

Abuse of the Bounce Back Loan scheme is continuing to land people in court as the Insolvency Service tightens its net around those who have misused the cash designed to help businesses during the pandemic lockdowns. Five individuals have separately been made subject to bankruptcy restrictions totalling 48 years for exploitation of the initiative, which ...

Beautician gave �10k of Bounce Back Loan to sister

Abuse of the Bounce Back Loan scheme is continuing to land people in court as the Insolvency Service tightens its net around those who have misused the cash designed to help businesses during the pandemic lockdowns. Five individuals have separately been made subject to bankruptcy restrictions totalling 48 years for exploitation of the initiative, which ...

Eligible couples urged to apply for tax reduction

Thousands of couples could be missing the opportunity to reduce their tax by £250 a year. Married couples and people in civil partnerships can sign up for Marriage Allowance, which allows them to share their personal tax allowances if one partner earns below the Personal Allowance threshold of £12,570, and the other is a basic ...

Thousands of businesses at risk of import delays

Businesses are being warned they could risk significant delays to importing goods if they don’t move to the UK’s new streamlined customs system. Organisations submitting import declarations must use the Customs Declaration Service from 1 October 2022, when the Customs Handling Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system will close for import declarations. Businesses should check ...

Businesses unite to create summer offers for struggling families

Families struggling to make ends meet in the cost-of-living crisis will be able to take advantage of special deals over the summer holidays. Some of the UK’s biggest businesses have signed up to offer discounts and deals through the Government’s Help for Households Campaign. Asda, Morrisons, Amazon and Vodafone are among those supporting the initiative ...

Tax Diary August/September 2022

1 August 2022 – Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 31 October 2021. 19 August 2022 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 August 2022. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 August 2022) 19 August 2022 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Tax when selling personal possessions

There are certain circumstances when you will pay Capital Gains Tax when selling personal possessions. You may have to pay Capital Gains Tax if you make a profit (‘gain’) when you sell (or ‘dispose of’) a personal possession for £6,000 or more. For example, you may need to pay tax on sale of personally owned ...

Political hiatus

Now our present Prime Minister has indicated his intention to resign it seems unlikely that a successor will be appointed before September. Which means Boris Johnson’s cabinet are caretakers for the interim period and it is doubtful that there will be any far-reaching changes to UK taxes. The new Prime Minister and his or her ...

Up to two thousand tax free

Since 2017, there is no tax to pay on trading income or earnings from land and property as long as the income from each source does not exceed £1,000. Trading allowance The trading allowance is a tax exemption of up to £1,000 a year for individuals with trading income from: self-employment. casual services, for example, ...

Individual Voluntary Arrangements

If you are locked into an IVA and are concerned that recent increases in the cost of living are creating severe financial pressures, you can ask your IVA supervisor to review your income and expenses to see if you are eligible for a reduction in payments or a payment break. You will be required to ...

Software savings boost for small businesses

More than a million small businesses are now eligible for discounted software through a flagship government scheme after a change to the rules. The Help to Grow: Digital Scheme, which cuts the price of leading software to boost productivity and growth in the UK’s smaller firms, is now available to businesses with just one employee. ...

Low-paid workers in line for cash boost

More than a million of the lowest-paid workers in the UK will receive a financial boost from 2025. New Government legislation just published confirms that around 1.2 million low earners who save for their pension through a Net Pay Arrangement (NPA) will get the same level of government top-up as those who use Relief at ...

Hospitality workers to benefit from tips regulation change

Hospitality staff will be able to keep their well-deserved tips from grateful customers under new legislation that has been backed by Government. Although customers may leave cash to say thank you to their waiter staff, many employers still keep the money for themselves. For card payments, it is even harder to keep track of where ...

Get help to avoid debts spiralling out of control

People who are worried about the impact of rising prices and its effect on household incomes are being urged to seek support. Speaking to a trained and experienced debt adviser about your situation could help you decide what to do before the situation gets out of control. Having early conversations is the best first step ...

Millions of workers to benefit from tax cut

Around 30 million people across the UK will be looking forward to seeing extra cash in their pocket after the biggest personal tax cut in a decade came into force. Some lucky workers will be saving £330 a year, with around 2.2 million no longer having to pay tax. The £6 billion tax cut will ...

Amazon faces probe over third-party practices

Online retail giant Amazon is being investigated by the Competitions and Markets Authority (CMA) over concerns its practices could result in a worse deal for customers. It is understood the investigation will be looking at how Amazon’s operations affecting sellers on its UK Marketplace may be anti-competitive. This new investigation follows a current European Commission ...

Government reviews personal insolvency framework

Have you ever found yourself in financial distress, struggling to juggle the bills and balance the books? Or perhaps you have supported someone with their debt issues. The Government is looking for input from anyone who has been touched by severe money problems as it reviews the personal insolvency framework for England and Wales. Anyone ...

What does goodwill mean ?

In a business context, goodwill could be defined as the amount that a buyer would be prepared to pay for your business over and above the valuation of the business net assets. Very often, it is the relationships that you have built with your customer base that is the most valuable asset. Buyers will be ...

Easier access to free TV licenses

Pensioners on low incomes will find it easier and quicker to apply for or renew their free TV licence under reforms laid in Parliament today. The legislative change will ease the administrative burden put on eligible over-75s when applying for a free licence. As it stands those affected are required to obtain and share documentation ...

Tax gap running at 5%

HMRC published a report last month that acknowledges it was only able to recover 95% of the taxes assessed for 2020-21. In monetary terms, the tax gap for the 2020-21 tax year is £32 billion. At 5.1%, there has been no change in the percentage tax gap compared to the previous year, although the monetary ...

Tax Diary July/August 2022

1 July 2022 – Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 30 September 2021. 6 July 2022 – Complete and submit forms P11D return of benefits and expenses and P11D(b) return of Class 1A NICs. 19 July 2022 – Pay Class 1A NICs (by the 22 July 2022 if paid electronically). 19 ...

Loss of personal allowance

If your taxable income exceeds £100,000 you will suffer a reduction in your personal tax allowance. For every £2 that your income exceeds £100,000, £1 will be knocked off your allowance. The reduction is progressive and means that once your income exceeds £125,140 your personal allowance of £12,570 will be reduced to zero. As Income ...

What is goodwill?

In a business context, goodwill could be defined as the amount that a buyer would be prepared to pay for your business over and above the valuation of the business net assets. Very often, it is the relationships that you have built with your customer base that is the most valuable asset. Buyers will be ...

Not so trivial benefits

The trivial benefits exemption allows you to provide benefits to employees without your employee suffering a tax charge on the benefit. Likewise, there is no Class 1A National Insurance for you, the employer, to pay. To count as ‘trivial’ for the purposes of the exemption, the benefit must meet all of the following conditions: the ...

New protection for tenants

The government has announced their intention to radically overhaul the rights of tenants. The changes announced include: For tenants Helping the most vulnerable by outlawing blanket bans on renting to families with children or those in receipt of benefits. For the first time, ending the use of arbitrary rent review clauses, restricting tribunals from hiking ...

Coping with inflation

Finance Secretary Kate Forbes, of the Scottish government, made a number of suggestions to help households and businesses who are struggling to cope with inflation.   With inflation reaching a 40-year high of 9 per cent, and forecast to rise higher, Ms Forbes has written to the Chancellor of the Exchequer urging the UK Government ...

Concerns about Repayment Agents

New measures to stop rip-off agents taking advantage of people by pocketing their tax repayments have been proposed by HMRC. To achieve this, HMRC have launched a 12-week consultation Raising standards in tax advice: Protecting customers claiming tax repayments to consider ways to better protect taxpayers from Repayment Agents who make routine tax claims on ...

Nothing to declare

Downsizing business operations is a perfectly acceptable response to economic pressures, and this may lead to an absence of activity for a period of time. This would have been the likely experience of businesses subject to recent lockdown restrictions.   Unfortunately, our obligation to file returns to HMRC does not end if there are no ...

Proposed new deal for private renters

The fairer private rented sector white paper published 16 June 2022, will ensure millions of families benefit from living in decent, well looked-after homes as part of the biggest shake up of the private rented sector in 30 years. The white paper marks a generational shift that will redress the balance between landlords and 4.4 ...

Seeing is believing?

It is no longer certain that if you receive a letter, email, text or phone call – purporting to be the tax office or some similar, regulatory authority – that it is a genuine communication.   Red flags should be waved, and warning buzzers sounded if anyone ever requests personal information or your bank details. ...

Will quarterly reporting lead to quarterly payments?

Within a few years, many taxpayers that are presently required to file a tax return, and most businesses, will be required to file quarterly data with HMRC using the Treasury Making Tax Digital portal. In which case, the present annual filing obligations will be replaced by quarterly filing obligations.   Paying tax in arrears Apart ...

Employing students in the summer break

If you employ students to manage your staff needs over the summer break period, you will need to add them to your payroll and apply PAYE and NIC rules.   Students should be advised that they will pay tax and NIC if: they earn more than £1,048 a month on average, and pay NIC if ...

Employing students in the summer holidays

If you employ students to manage your staff needs over the summer break period, you will need to add them to your payroll and apply PAYE and NIC rules.   Students should be advised that they will pay tax and NIC if: they earn more than £1,048 a month on average, and pay NIC if ...

Till fraud

The scope of tax fraud seems to be taking on new forms according to a recent press release issued by HMRC. The latest attempt involves the use of software to suppress sales recorded at point of sale. The systems even warrant a new acronym, ESS. Electronic Sales Suppression (ESS) Businesses involved in making, supplying or ...

Stamp Duty refund fraud

HMRC have noticed an increase in claims for Stamp Duty refunds that are incorrect In fact, new homeowners are being warned about cold calls from rogue tax repayment agents advising them to make speculative Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) refund claims, which could leave them with large tax bills. Claims are failing HMRC checks The ...

Tax Diary June/July 2022

1 June 2022 – Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 31 August 2021. 19 June 2022 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 June 2022. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 June 2022). 19 June 2022 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Advisory fuel rates

If you pay for the fuel used in your company car you are entitled to recover the cost of the fuel – for business journeys – based on agreed Advisory Fuel Rates (AFRs), from your employer. If the agreement with your employer is that you pay for all the fuel costs and that none can ...

Stock holding and inflation

If your business processes materials or assembles goods for sale it will need to keep a stock of items to ensure that future sales can be met. Ideally, stock levels should be kept to a minimum such that hard won cash reserves are not tied up unnecessarily. You will need to manage stocks to cover ...

Holiday lets – occupancy and benefits

There are a number of tax incentives if you own and let a furnished holiday lets property (FHL). They include:   Claiming Capital Gains Tax reliefs for traders (Business Asset Rollover Relief, Business Asset Disposal Relief, relief for gifts of business assets and relief for loans to traders), Entitlement to claim capital allowance deductions for ...

Sunak steps up

Long-awaited government support to help consumers meet the unprecedented increases in energy costs was announced by the Chancellor this week.   His measures have been widely appreciated, but will he need to return with more largesse to meet even more prices increases in oil, gas and electricity prices in the autumn? What has he offered ...

Heat Pump Scheme

Many households are considering their options to reduce their energy costs in light of the recent price hikes in the cost of electricity and gas.   Aside from breaking into long sealed chimney breasts and burning the furniture, realistic options have been extended in recent weeks by the introduction of a government grant of £5,000 ...

Commercial risk

Setting up and running your own business is a risky undertaking. What happens if sales reduce or disappear, and you are left with unpaid costs or loans and no cashflow?   The experience of recent COVID lockdown challenges – aside from the risk to personal health – has resulted in business closures at an unprecedented ...

Landlords switch to holiday lets

Cornwall, and we expect many holiday locations, are seeing an increase in landlords switching from domestic letting to holiday lets. Aside from the increased rents they can obtain, should they be successful in making this transition, there are tax as well as commercial advantages.   It all comes down to occupancy. What are the tax ...

Flexible planning

If we lived in a world where the factors that affected trade and other commercial activity were unchanging, then plans drawn up for extended periods, say a year, would be a reliable benchmark to measure actual results against in the same period. Unfortunately, change is a common occurrence these days. Plans drawn up will become ...

New Bill protects consumers access to cash

The new Financial Services and Markets Bill, announced during the recent Queen’s Speech at the state opening of parliament, will support consumers by protecting access to cash. It will ensure the continued availability of withdrawal and deposit facilities across the UK, and that the country’s cash infrastructure is sustainable for the long term. The Bill ...

Saving for a rainy day

The more draconian government interventions introduced to control the COVID outbreak have challenged all of us, businesses and individuals, to consider the notion that we can no longer rely on our jobs or businesses to effortlessly produce the income we need. Many businesses in the hospitality and entertainment sectors had their ability to trade quashed. ...

Elastic or inelastic?

Would demand for the products or services you sell vary with price increases or decreases? This conundrum is considered by the term elasticity in economic circles – how demand changes when prices change. If demand for your products is elastic, any change in price will have a corresponding impact in demand. For example, if you ...

Investing to increase profits

The UK tax code has numerous reliefs and allowances that reduce tax when businesses invest in qualifying assets. Some of the reliefs allow up to 100% of the invested cost to be written off against taxable profits and companies can presently write-off 130% of qualifying expenditure. But aside from these tax incentives to invest, it ...

High energy industries attract increased support

The other side of the recent hikes in consumer energy costs – taking their toll on take-home pay across the UK – are the similar cost increases for industry. Focussing on high-energy users, the government recently announced the following increased support for Energy Intensive Industries (IEE). High energy usage businesses, such as steel and paper ...

Tax Diary May/June 2022

1 May 2022 – Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 30 July 2021. 19 May 2022 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 May 2022. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 May 2022). 19 May 2022 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

New internet laws return to Parliament

Parliamentarians will debate the government’s ground-breaking Online Safety Bill which requires social media platforms, search engines and other apps and websites allowing people to post content to improve the way they protect their users. Ofcom, the regulator, will have the power to fine companies failing to comply with the laws up to ten per cent ...

Using your private vehicle for business journeys

Employers can pay employees a fixed rate per mile to cover the costs of using their own vehicles on company business. The present agreed rates per mile are: Cars and vans – 45p per mile for the first 10,000 miles and then 25p per mile. Motorcycles – 24p per mile. Bikes – 20p per mile. ...

Employment Allowance increase

The Employment Allowance has risen from £4,000 to £5,000 – meaning smaller firms will be able to claim up to £5,000 off their employer National Insurance Contributions (NICs) bills. Announced by the Chancellor at last month’s Spring Statement to reduce employment costs, the change takes an extra 50,000 firms out of paying NICs and the ...

Dividends hit by NIC increase

Dividends are a distribution of company profits to shareholders. Historically, they have been taxed as unearned income – no National Insurance deductions. This is still the case, but the Treasury have decided that the recent increase of 1.25% in National Insurance rates will also apply to dividends. Since April 2016, the rates of Income Tax ...

Tax planning 2022-23

Planning to save tax may seem like a luxury buy in these days of rising prices and recovering from COVID fallout. And yet tax planning is of real value in these uncertain times. Whether your income and profits are increasing or reducing, there will be tax consequences. And unfortunately, to mitigate your tax footprint you ...

Rising prices – inflation and the background

We are all feeling the effects of inflation, increasing energy, fuel and the price of basic foodstuffs affect us all. The Government Actuary’s Department has posted a blog article recently – Inflation, its personal – written by Christopher Ward, Actuary. The article provides a useful update on the scope and cause of rising prices. It ...

Reorganising company structures to save tax

When corporation tax increases from 1 April 2023, companies will need to consider three scenarios: From 1 April 2023: The main corporation tax rate is increased to 25% where profits are over the upper profits limit, set at £250,000. A small profits rate will apply for companies whose profits are equal or below the lower ...

The value of objectivity

Many business owners feel qualified to act on their subjective conclusions. Where these conclusions are key to the continuing success of the business this internal process opens up the possibility of failure – what if you have failed to consider all the possible risks? As individuals, we can only grapple with our internal thought processes, ...

Saving to meet future tax payments

Whether you are self-employed or run your business through a company, the profits you produce are subject to tax less any reliefs for past losses or investments in assets that qualify for tax relief. As most accounts software packages do not allow for these tax liabilities on a month-by-month basis, there is a tendency to ...

Planning for the unexpected

How do we plan for the unpredictability that is a recurring feature of our business lives? Brexit, COVID-19, and now the war in Ukraine, all conspire to create trading conditions that can best be described as chaotic. Present challenges include increasing energy and commodity prices, both of which are forcing up the cost of living ...

Landlords and Making Tax Digital

Landlords are described by HMRC as a property business and yet their income, rents received, is treated as an exempt transaction for VAT purposes, i.e., landlords do not need to register for VAT and submit quarterly returns. The only exception is if a let commercial property has been opted-in to VAT. This means that the ...

Happy new tax year

Like so many of the regulations that govern our lives, the legislative processes underpinning these rules are anachronisms – things that belong to the past. For example, the present tax year ends on 5th April 2022. The reason that our tax year ends on this obscure date started in 1582 when Pope Gregory ordered a ...

Tax Diary April/May 2022

1 April 2022 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 June 2021. 19 April 2022 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 April 2022. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 April 2022). 19 April 2022 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

HMRC warning to taxpayers

HMRC issued the following press release 8 March 2022: “HMRC is warning customers not to share sensitive personal information online to avoid their identities being used to commit tax fraud. “HMRC is aware that criminals are attempting to obtain customers’ Government Gateway logins and other personal details, enabling them to register for Income Tax Self-Assessment ...

The transition to quarterly tax returns

Individuals with significant income – including the self-employed – are presently required to file one tax return a year. From April 2024, HMRC’s Making Tax Digital program is being expanded to include self-employed individuals and landlords with business or rental income in excess of £10,000. This is described as MTD for ITSA (Income Tax Self-Assessment) ...

Change of accounting year end

In preparation for the introduction of Making Tax Digital for Income Tax Self-Assessment the basis period rules for unincorporated businesses are being abolished. Instead, unincorporated businesses will be assessed on the profits actually earned in the tax year. The new rules take effect from 2024/25, with 2023/24 being a transitional year. This will affect you ...

Corporation tax increase

The present 19% rate of Corporation Tax applies to all companies whatever their size. From 1 April 2023, this flat rate will cease to apply and will be replaced by variable rates ranging from 19% to 25%. A small profits rate of 19% will apply to companies whose profits are equal to or less than ...

A few days left to pay self-assessment bills

Self-Assessment taxpayers have until 1 April 2022 to pay their tax bill for 2020-21 or set up a payment plan to avoid incurring a penalty. A payment plan, if agreed with HMRC, will allow a taxpayer to spread the cost of their bill into manageable monthly instalments. The online Time to Pay service is available ...

Energy bills support 2022

We have summarised below the three main sources of government support to assist householders with their energy bills for the coming year. They are: A £200 discount on their energy bill this Autumn for domestic electricity customers in Great Britain. This will be paid back automatically over the next 5 years. A £150 non-repayable Council ...

Spring Statement 2022

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has delivered his Spring Statement to the House of Commons against a backdrop of a growing cost of living crisis. The Chancellor also stressed that, apart from the untold human suffering, the Russian invasion of Ukraine is creating further uncertainty in the domestic and global economy, particularly in relation to energy ...

Increase in corporation tax next year

In just over a year’s time, from 1 April 2023, corporation tax rates are increasing. At present, companies pay tax on profits at a single rate of 19%, irrespective of the amounts of profits subject to corporation tax. From 1 April 2023, this elegantly simple process is about to change. From 1 April 2023: Companies ...

Tax-free gifts

There are three circumstances when you may not have to pay capital gains tax (CGT) on a gift. They are: It the taxable value of the gift is below the CGT annual tax-free allowance of £12,300. Gifts to your spouse or civil partner, or Gifts to charities. Gifts to your spouse or civil partner You ...

Time to consider your options

As we approach the beginning of the next fiscal year, from April 2022 to March 2023, what options do you have to rethink your planning options for your personal and business finances? The list that follows is not exhaustive, but it does outline some of the opportunities you have to reconsider your options. Personal finances ...

Check large company payment profile

Since January 2021, large companies have been requested to sign up to a government initiative that requires them to set out how effective they are at settling supplier payments. This information can be a critical factor if you are a small company supplying goods or services to a larger concern and cannot afford to wait ...

Regulator urges safe giving

The following press release issued by the Charity Commission sets out how to ensure your donations reach those affected by the invasion of Ukraine. “The Charity Commission and Fundraising Regulator have urged the public to ‘give safely’ to registered charities as people make generous donations to causes helping to support and protect people affected by ...

Tax relief for charitable donations

Many of us have chosen to donate to relief organisations in the past week as the plight of displaced persons in Ukraine continues to dominate the news. The following notes explain how you can claim for tax relief on these, and any other charitable donations made this tax year. Giving from your personal funds Donations ...

Online Sales Tax – a step closer?

High street retailers will be interested in the recent publication of an early-stage consultation that explores the argument for and against an Online Sales Tax. It is argued by the retail sector that business rates discriminate against the high street. The idea is to use any revenue from this tax to fund reductions in business ...

Tax Diary March/April 2022

1 March 2022 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 May 2021. 2 March 2022 – Normally Self-Assessment tax for 2020-21 would need to be paid by 2 March or a 5% surcharge would be incurred. This year HMRC is giving taxpayers more time to pay and no surcharge will ...

Closing a limited company

You usually need the agreement of your company’s directors and shareholders to close a limited company. The way you close the company depends on whether or not it can pay its bills. If the company can pay its bills (it is ‘solvent’) You can either: apply to get the company struck off the Register of ...

Have you used your tax-free capital gains allowance?

You and each member of your family is entitled to make tax-free capital gains of up to £12,300 in the 2021-22 tax year. If you have made no disposals that would trigger a capital gain in 2021-22, consider the following: If you have assets, shares for example, that you are thinking of selling, you may ...

Back to normal?

Now that the majority of COVID-19 restrictions are being eased, or removed completely, can we assume that normality can return in place of the unremitting uncertainty of the past two years? Whilst this may seem to be a welcome prospect, business owners badly affected by this disruption will have two issues holding them back: A ...

Do you qualify for this allowance?

HMRC recently published a reminder targeted at married couples with an unused personal tax allowance. They said: Marriage Allowance allows married couples or those in civil partnerships to share their personal tax allowances if one partner earns an income under their Personal Allowance threshold of £12,570, and the other is a basic rate taxpayer. Eligible ...

Dynamic planning

More challenges to our financial plans last week as the Russian incursion into Ukraine has boosted the price of oil and gas and adds a new layer of uncertainty to global economic activity in the coming year. How will this affect our current business plans? There is a tendency to see a business plan as ...

Company share schemes

EMI Scheme Most share option schemes, with an eye to tax benefits, use the Enterprise Management Incentive (EMI) scheme. For qualifying arrangements, there are tax incentives for the employer and employee. The point to emphasise with EMI arrangements is that they can only be made by employers with their employees. Unapproved option scheme Unapproved share ...

Sharing income with your family

The UK tax system does not allow families to spread the impact of taxation where there is one significant income earner providing for other family members. For example, if one parent was earning £100,000, they will be paying income tax at 40% rates on almost £50,000 of their income when their partner and teenage children ...

On-line rip-offs exposed

In a recent press release the Competition and Marketing Authority issued details of a poll of over 2,000 UK adults. According to the results of the poll: 7 out of 10 had experienced misleading online practices 85% believed businesses using them were being dishonest with their customers And 83% were less likely to buy from ...

Challenging your council tax band

Apparently, February is the month that many homeowners take issue with their council tax banding in the hope and expectation that it will result in lower – not higher – council tax bills 2022-23. Anticipating this, the Valuation Office, who oversee these reviews, have issued guidance. In their opening to a news story published 4 ...

When did you last estimate your personal wealth?

During the pandemic, businesses affected by COVID-19 disruption will have had their attention firmly focussed on survival. Certain sectors have suffered more than others with the hospitality, entertainment and leisure industries bearing the brunt of lockdown measures. But what impact has this unprecedented period had on the value of your personal assets? One thing we ...

Time to top-up your pension pot

We are fast approaching the end of another tax year, 5 April 2022. To benefit from tax relief for 2021-22 you will need to make any top-up payment on or before this date. To help you reach a decision, we have summarised the present tax rules that set out how much you can pay into ...

Tax Diary February/March 2022

1 February 2022 – Due date for Corporation Tax payable for the year ended 30 April 2021. 19 February 2022 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 February 2022 (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 February 2022). 19 February 2022 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Beware overtrading

If politicians have it right, we may be approaching the end of the major disruption to economic activity of the past two years. Which is great news for those trades badly affected by continuing lockdown and other restrictions. Unfortunately, rapid growth following a long period of depressed trading conditions can prove to be disastrous. The ...

Still time to consider tax planning options for 2021-22

With rare exceptions, once the end of the tax year has passed, tax planning options to reduce liability are no longer possible. For Income Tax and Capital Gains Tax purposes, this means that the majority of the tax reduction options will cease unless actioned before 6 April 2022, the start of the next tax year. ...

Self-isolation for those with COVID-19

Since Monday 17 January, people with COVID-19 in England can end their self-isolation after 5 full days, as long as they test negative on day 5 and day 6. The decision has been made after careful consideration of modelling from the UK Health Security Agency and to support essential public services and workforces over the ...

Tax return filing and payments update

HMRC is waiving late filing and late payment penalties for Self-Assessment taxpayers for one month – giving them extra time, if they need it, to complete their 2020-21 tax return and pay any tax due. HMRC is encouraging taxpayers to file and pay on time if they can, as the department reveals that, of the ...

One-third of self-assessment returns still to be filed

HMRC has confirmed that four million out of twelve point two million taxpayers have yet to file their 2020-21 self-assessment tax returns. Which means that an equivalent proportion of taxes due 31 January 2022 will remain unpaid; at least for the foreseeable future. We have reported on our blog earlier in January 2022, that HMRC ...

England returns to Plan A

In between the other political distractions of the last few weeks, England has returned to the COVID measures set out in Plan A. This means: The government is no longer asking people to work from home if they can. People should now talk to their employers to agree arrangements to return to the office. Face ...

Employment of someone to work in your home

Paying someone to act as your nanny, housekeeper or gardener may result in you being considered an employer. In turn, this may involve you needing to meet statutory employment rights and deducting any tax or National Insurance contributions from their wages. These obligations will not apply if: They are self-employed, or Paid through an agency. ...

Are you eligible for local authority grants?

A reminder that business in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sectors in England may be due support funding from their local authority. Recently, local authorities were reminded by government that they needed to process grants quickly. Extracts from a letter sent to authorities is reproduced below: “As you will know, the spread of the Omicron ...

Self-employed tax twisters

We are often asked why a self-employed person is paying so much tax when their drawings from their self-employed business are minimal. The reason for this is that sole traders and partners (individuals) pay tax on the profits they earn not on the amount of cash they withdraw from their business. For example, consider Sue, ...

Landlords and tax – the basics

The following definitions set out how property income is calculated and taxed: Rental income – includes rents, amounts received to cover use of furniture, cleaning of communal areas, hot water, heating and repairs to property. Allowable expenses – any expense that you have laid out “wholly and exclusively” for the purposes of renting out a ...

More time to file tax returns and pay tax due

HMRC is responding to the pressures we all feel as the new COVID-19 variant, Omicron, makes normal life difficult once more. The offer by HMRC is generous. Basically, they have announced that taxpayers who have still not filed their self-assessment tax returns for 2020-21, will be granted an extra month to file online without triggering ...

Are you registered to use MTD for VAT?

Businesses are reminded to take steps to prepare for Making Tax Digital for Value Added Tax (VAT) before it becomes mandatory for all VAT-registered businesses from 1 April this year. Making Tax Digital is designed to help businesses eliminate common errors and save time managing their tax affairs. Making Tax Digital for VAT is part ...

Don\’t forget to declare COVID-19 grants

HMRC have issued the following guidance to taxpayers who may have received COVID-19 grants during the 2020-21 tax year. “If you claimed Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) or received Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grants, you’ll need to include details of all the taxable coronavirus support scheme payments you received during the 2020 to 2021 tax ...

Will your earnings exceed any of these amounts in 2021-22?

£100,000 – Loss of income tax personal allowance Your income tax personal allowance – £12,570 for 2021-22 – will be reduced by £1 for every £2 your adjusted net income exceeds £100,000. If your projected earnings for the current tax year are expected to be in excess of £100,000, perhaps for the first time, you ...

Tax Diary January/February 2022

1 January 2022 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 March 2021. 19 January 2022 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 January 2022. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 January 2022). 19 January 2022 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

January is tax payment time

As you will see from the tax diary notes this month, there are two significant tax payment deadlines this month. 1 January 2022 – Companies with a 31 March 2021 year end date will need to settle their Corporation Tax payment on or before this date. 31 January 2022 – Taxpayers who are subject to ...

Time to dust-off those online shop plans?

Do you have half-completed plans to open an online-shop this year? Even if you have never considered internet trading, could this be an option for 2022? Business owners If you are selling goods, creating a web-based sales platform will vastly expand your reach to willing buyers. Combined with effective social media and other marketing activity ...

Lockdown survival tactics

We have listed below a number of ideas that might ease your progress through any continuing COVID-19 related disruption during 2022. The following comments are not advice. Every business is different so please call if you have concerns due to a reduction in trade this year. Mothball investment plans. Could you defer decisions on buying ...

Facing 2022

We are now two years into the COVID-19 pandemic and the virus is showing a remarkable ability to adapt. In its latest form, the Omicron variant, it is proving to be more transmissible and successful at seeking out new hosts. If we have learnt anything from the experience of the past two years of anxiety ...

Be prepared for change in 2022

We are all ‘up to here’ in accommodating COVID-19, and depending on our tolerance levels, this is likely to continue into 2022. There are remote signs that a combination of vaccines and/or anti-viral drugs will eventually arrest the spread of this infection, but we will have to face disruption in economic activity next year and ...

Plug-in vehicle grants reduced

From 15 December 2021, the government is making the following reductions to the grants made available for certain electric vehicle purchases. It will provide grants of up to £1,500 (previously £2,500) for electric cars priced under £32,000. There are currently around 20 models on the market that would qualify for this grant. Support for wheelchair ...

Recent damage to electricity distribution network

Many individuals and businesses will have been affected by the disruption in electricity supplies due to recent storm damage. Most of the serious damage that disrupted supplies was reconnected fairly quickly, but for many home and business owners, reconnection has become a protracted affair. A recent letter from the Secretary of State for Business to ...

Time to pay taxes

January 2022 is a ‘taxing’ month. It is the last month to file a self-assessment tax return (electronically) for 2020-21 and avoid late filing penalties. It is also a month when significant tax bills may become payable. Companies Companies that have a 31 March 2021 year end will need to pay any corporation tax due ...

Travel between places of work

A reimbursement of expenditure incurred by an employee in travelling between two or more places of work is not “earnings” and therefore not taxable. This is because the expenditure would be an allowable claim if the employee had paid it out of their remuneration, as he or she would be travelling in the performance of ...

Planning for higher corporation tax rates

We are fifteen months away from a radical upward lift in corporation tax (CT) rates. From 1 April 2023, there will be two rates of CT: A small profits rate which will stay at the present 19% and will apply to companies with profits up to £50,000. An increased main rate, which will be set ...

Tax Diary December 2021/January 2022

1 December 2021 – Due date for corporation tax payable for the year ended 28 February 2021. 19 December 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 December 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 December 2021). 19 December 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Budget bad news 27 October 2021

Readers should take note of the following changes: Income Tax Allowances frozen: The Income Tax personal allowance and the rates and bands are frozen until April 2026. Whilst this is not a direct tax increase, it does mean that any increases in earnings will be fully taxed and certain taxpayers may find that this process ...

Budget bonuses 27 October 2021

There was little good cheer in the Chancellor’s announcements to parliament on 27 October. A short summary of the good news is listed below: Annual Investment Allowance (AIA): The £1m limit to claims for tax relief when purchasing qualifying assets was due to return to a more modest £200,000 from the 1st of January 2022. ...

Business gifts and tax

Business gifts are not allowed as a tax deduction against profits. The legislation treats gifts in the same way as business entertaining expenditure, which is also disallowed. HMRC define a gift as: “… something that is given to a person without receiving anything in exchange. It is offered voluntarily and without any expectation of a ...

Christmas gifts for staff

Readers are reminded that there is a tax-free allowance for the provision of an annual party or other event for the benefit of staff and their partners. The present limit to tax relief is £150 per head. If this amount is exceeded, the full cost of the benefit is taxable not the excess over £150. ...

Increasing footfall

Footfall measures the number of times a customer returns to your business to purchase goods and services. Many business owners believe that the most effective way to increase turnover is to win more customers or to charge them more for purchases. Both of these strategies may work to increase sales, but both contain hidden costs. ...

Christmas shopping warning

If you are buying Christmas gifts online this year, take care that you are not presented with unexpected VAT, excise duty or customs duty charges before you can take possession of your purchases. HMRC is urging shoppers to consider certain custom’s issues before they start browsing to buy gifts online. Otherwise, they may be hit ...

Beware tax scams

HMRC have issued a press release that sets out the scale of criminal activity, convincing taxpayers to part with bank or personal details under threat of arrest or court action. The scale of these self-assessment scams is staggering, apparently over 800,000 tax-related scams were reported to HMRC is the past year. Why is this activity ...

Business exit planning

Unless you are committed to dying with your boots on, there will come a day when you desire to exit from your business and retire or try something different. The way that you organise your business, and in particular, the way you organise your finances, will have an impact on the value (£’s) you can ...

New to import and export red tape?

If you are importing goods into the UK for the first time you may be advised to seek the assistance of a qualified customs agent. The process of creating and filing the correct documentation, such that the goods can pass through border controls with no hold-ups, and any duties or import VAT are paid, is ...

What are ULEVs?

ULEV expands to Ultra Low Emission Vehicles. It is an acronym that we will see on a more frequent basis as climate issues climb in importance. Most families have cars, some use commercial vehicles. The majority are presently fuelled by petrol or diesel. As manufacturers commit investment to the development of carbon-free transport options, primarily ...

Chips are down

Mention the words chips to most people and fried potatoes would come to mind.   Suggesting that there is a growing shortage of chips would no doubt generate a stampede to the local supermarkets. This sudden rise in demand would double up the pressure on farmers to increase supply and within a short time the ...

Tired of slow internet connectivity?

In a recent press release the government confirmed that more than 500,000 rural homes in the UK are to receive access to better broadband plans. They said:   • 570,000 more rural premises in line for best broadband available via £5 billion Project Gigabit • Includes Cheshire, Devon, Dorset, Somerset, Essex, Herefordshire, Gloucestershire, Lincolnshire, East ...

Budget planning opportunities

It was difficult to find any changes proposed in the budget last week that gave rise to great optimism or that swept away the nagging feeling that we are not out of the woods just yet. We have summarised below some of the issues that will affect actions that we should perhaps consider between now ...

Tax Diary November/December 2021

1 November 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 January 2021. 19 November 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 November 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 November 2021.) 19 November 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Budget 27 October 2021

We now know the Chancellor’s preferred strategy for plugging any hole in the UK’s finances is by tweaking taxation and using the proceeds to pay-back government borrowings. Various government departments will also need to tighten their departmental belts to reduce government expenditure. When we’ve had time to consider the effects of the announced budget changes, ...

Company filing dates

In most cases, the statutory filing date for a Corporation Tax return is twelve months after the end of the relevant accounting period. HMRC considers reasonable excuse to be something that stops a company from meeting a tax obligation despite them having taken reasonable care to meet that obligation. HMRC will consider what a reasonable ...

Self-assessment tax deadline approaching

There are still two ways to submit your self-assessment tax return. Most taxpayers chose to file electronically, and if we file your tax return, this is the way we would file on your behalf. If you do file electronically, the filing deadline for the 2020-21 tax year is 31 January 2022. But there are still ...

Changes in VAT rates for hospitality traders

The temporary reduced rate of VAT (5%), introduced to assist qualifying hospitality trades disrupted by COVID lockdown measures, was increased to 12.5% on 1 October 2021. Based on present information, from 31 March 2022, this 12.5% rate will revert to the 20% standard rate. Businesses that manage their own accounts software will need to change ...

Autumn Budget 2021 Summary

As with the Spring Budget 2021, much of the detail for the Autumn Budget had been leaked to the press prior to the official report to parliament, 27th October 2021. But we now have all the details and, as usual, there is much to consider. The following Budget summary is split into two sections: Taxation ...

Time to tighten the belt ?

Later this week (27 October 2021) Rishi Sunak will present his second budget during 2021. It is likely that reduced public expenditure and higher taxation will be features of this budget as the Treasury seeks to limit any further rise in government borrowings. The Chancellor will also have in mind increases in inflation and the ...

New global tax system

To tax multinational companies on business transactions completed in the UK, our government introduced the Digital Services Tax (DST) April 2020. The US response was to threaten to levy tariffs. However, a compromise has been reached that will see the introduction of a global system that will ensure multinationals do pay their fair share of ...

Time to let your hair down.

We are all due a little rest and recuperation. The last eighteen months have been challenging and stressful. If, big if, COVID infection is contained this winter, perhaps we could start to consider celebrating with and family and friends during the Christmas break. And why not fund a “business” related event that will have the ...

What is cabotage?

Although it sounds like a culinary dish – a cabbage compote (?) – cabotage is defined as the transport of goods or passengers between two places in the same country by a transport operator from another country. Its present relevance is a rule that restricts hauliers from the EU who can only make two cabotage ...

What is cabotage?

Although it sounds like a culinary dish – a cabbage compote (?) – cabotage is defined as the transport of goods or passengers between two places in the same country by a transport operator from another country. Its present relevance is a rule that restricts hauliers from the EU who can only make two cabotage ...

Reduction in support for hospitality sector

The temporary reduced rate of VAT (5%), introduced to assist qualifying hospitality trades disrupted by COVID lockdown measures, was increased to 12.5% from 1 October 2021. Based on present information, from 31 March 2022, this 12.5% rate will revert to the 20% standard rate. This reduction in VAT applied to the sales of hospitality trades ...

Tax year end – all change?

At present, self-employed traders (sole traders and partnerships) are taxed for each tax year on profits for the accounting period ending in that tax year. Therefore, if a trader’s accounting year end is 31 December, their assessment for 2021-22 will be based on adjusted profits for the year ending 31 December 2021. Which means that ...

Better late than never

A recent HMRC press release confirmed that sole traders and buy-to-let property businesses (but not incorporated businesses) will have an extra year to prepare for the digitalisation of Income Tax. Recognising the challenges faced by many UK businesses and their representatives as the country emerges from the pandemic, and having listened to stakeholder feedback, the ...

New measures to ease fuel supply chain pressures

The UK Government has announced that further measures will be put in place to help ease supply chain pressures as spikes in demand for fuel create a panic buying hysteria. This added pressure to already stretched supply chains is a further blow to affected businesses across the UK. The Government has announced the new measures ...

Tax Diary October/November 2021

1 October 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 December 2020. 19 October 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 October 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 October 2021.) 19 October 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Students are warned of tax scams

University students taking part-time jobs are at increased risk of falling victim to scams, HMRC is warning. Higher numbers of students going to university this year means more young people may choose to take on part-time work. Being new to interacting with HMRC and unfamiliar with genuine contact from the department could make them vulnerable ...

Data easing for the UK?

In a recent press release issued by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with the leading title “Unleashing Data’s Power”, it was announced: “The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is set for an overhaul to drive greater innovation and growth in the UK’s data sector and better protect the public from major data threats, ...

NIC increase – now you see it, now you don’t

From April 2022, in line with announcements made last month, National Insurance Class 1 contributions (that will affect employed persons and their employers) and Class 4 contributions (that will affect the self-employed), are increasing by 1.25%. These increases will affect all employed and self-employed workers that presently pay National Insurance. This increase will only apply ...

Dividend tax increases

If you have been keeping up with announcements from Downing Street, you will know that from April 2022 the hybrid rates of Income Tax on dividend income are increasing by 1.25 percentage points. The changes from April 2022 are: The first £2,000 of dividends received are free of any additional tax charge, no change here. ...

Dividend tax increase 2022

As well as increasing National Insurance contributions from April 2022 – the 1.25% increase announced earlier this month – the Treasury also increased the hybrid income tax rates applied to dividends received, by the same amount and from the same date. The changes from April 2022 are: The first £2,000 of dividends received are free ...

HMRC warns students of tax scams

HMRC is warning university students new to the world of working to be wary of potential scams. With higher numbers joining university, we are likely to see more students take on part-time work. As many young people may be unfamiliar with HMRC and legitimate contact from the department could make them vulnerable to scams. There ...

NIC and Levy high jinks

No surprises when the Prime Minister announced a hefty 1.25% increase in NIC Class 1 and Class 4 rates from April 2022. The announcement was widely predicted. Effectively, this is a tax increase on earnings (employed or self-employed) and on costs for employers. It is odd that a 1.25% increase in Income Tax would have ...

Government backs UK entrepreneurs with six hundred million of Start Up loans

The UK Government’s Start Up Loans scheme has now provided £600 million in loans to small businesses outside London, providing extensive support for entrepreneurs across the UK. The initiative, run by the British Business Bank, was created in 2012 to provide a wide range of smaller businesses with more opportunities to create jobs, expand and ...

What is round the corner?

Having glimpsed the light at the end of the COVID tunnel, many of us will have everything crossed that progress towards normality will continue. The winter months are not a brilliant time for infection and we should expect the usual rash of flu, and now COVID, cases to increase. In the past two years words ...

Hundreds of business names dismissed by Companies House during pandemic

Over the last two years, Companies House has disallowed more than 800 business names for being ‘too offensive’. Building That Fought Hitler Limited, Cambridge Cannabis Club Limited, Fancy a Bomb Ltd and Fit as Fork Ltd are among the company names that have been rejected by the executive agency and trading fund for the government. ...

Tax-free childcare costs

Families are reminded that they may be able to claim for tax-free childcare costs to help pay for breakfast and after school clubs as children go back to school. In a recent press release HMRC confirmed that Eligible families can save money on their childcare and benefit from a government top-up worth up to £2,000 ...

SMEs can enhance business performance by joining Peer Network scheme

A government-funded Peer Networks scheme is offering support to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across the UK. The programme, which is free to join, helps organisations tackle common business challenges through interactive action learning. Additionally, the scheme’s trained mentors help small and medium-sized businesses handle new opportunities and build a strong support network. Business leaders ...

Supply chain issues gaining traction

News broke in recent days that McDonalds were running out of supplies. As a direct result of these supply chain issues their iconic milk shakes are being dropped from menus together with other bottled drinks. These particular shortages will apply to outlets in England, Scotland and Wales. Supplies in Northern Ireland are holding up, so ...

Tax Diary September/October 2021

1 September 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 November 2020. 19 September 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 September 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 September 2021) 19 September 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Tax collection options

If you do not pay your tax bill on time and cannot make an alternative arrangement to pay, HMRC can take ‘enforcement action’ to recover any tax you owe. You can usually avoid enforcement action by contacting HMRC as soon as you know you have missed a tax payment or cannot pay on time. They ...

Furlough figures continue to fall

Almost three million people have moved off the furlough scheme since March as the economy began to bounce back and businesses reopened, according to new statistics. This is unsurprising as employers are now expected to cover 20% of any hours not worked with government providing 60%. It will be sobering to see how the final ...

Can you claim the marriage allowance?

In a recent news story published on the GOV.UK website, HMRC confirmed that nearly 1.8 million married couples and those in civil partnerships are claiming the Marriage Allowance to save up to £252 a year in Income Tax. The allowance enables married couples or those in civil partnerships to share their personal tax allowances if ...

Electric vehicles for company car drivers

As most drivers of a company car will be aware, if you have any private use of the vehicle this will result in a significant Income Tax charge. The benefit charge is the way that HMRC levy tax on this benefit in kind; and the higher the CO2 footprint of your company car, the higher ...

HMRC discloses employer explanations for not paying legal minimum wage

‘She only makes the tea’ and ‘my employees are on standby’ are just some of the strange excuses used by businesses who have paid their workers under the National Minimum Wage, the UK tax office has revealed. Every employed worker in Great Britain is legally entitled to the National Minimum Wage, but many employers tried ...

More UK businesses join vaccine uptake drive

In a recent press release the government announced that more of the country’s leading businesses from a variety of industries have pledged their support for the UK’s world-leading COVID-19 vaccination programme by offering incentives to vaccinated customers. Asda, lastminute.com, National Express, FREE NOW taxis and Better leisure centres will be offering discounts to people who ...

Fewest number of people on furlough since the scheme began

Furlough numbers have recently fallen to a record-low since the beginning of the pandemic, government data has confirmed. When businesses started reopening earlier this year, furlough numbers plunged by three million and have gradually declined ever since. records show that at the end of June 2021, nearly two million British workers were on furlough, dropping ...

Companies closed after abusing COVID loan support

In what is likely to be the tip of a significant ice-berg, two companies who fraudulently applied for thousands of pounds in grants and loans have been wound up in the courts. According to a recent government press release the two separate companies submitted false documents to at least 41 local authorities and the Government’s ...

Could you benefit from additional tax relief?

Couples may be eligible to reduce their Income Tax by up to £252 a year by sharing their Personal Allowances. HMRC has announced that nearly 1.8 million married couples and those in civil partnership are using Marriage Allowance to save up to £252 a year in Income Tax. Marriage Allowance allows married couples, or those ...

Help to Grow Scheme

It is still possible to register for one of two schemes under the Help to Grow banner.   Help to Grow Management Help to Grow: Management is an Executive Development programme accredited by the Small Business Charter, with 1:1 business mentor support throughout. The 12-week practical curriculum has modules spanning financial management, strategies for growth ...

UK to reduce unnecessary red tape for British businesses

Ministers have revealed bold plans to reform and modernise the way regulations are made and implemented in the UK. Following Brexit, the UK has the freedom to make and implement regulations that place British businesses and consumers first – freeing firms from excessive formality and reducing costs, while boosting competition, innovation and economic growth.   ...

Making use of under-utilised resources

Many businesses will have seen a reduction in activity as a direct result of the COVID pandemic. Assets and resources previously fully employed now lie idle or are under-utilised. In this post today we have listed a few ideas that may help you create new income streams from these resources. For example:   Premises Do ...

New reforms to protect consumers hard-earned cash

The UK Government’s Business Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, has revealed an arsenal of planned reforms to boost competition and protect the public from rip-offs, fraud and exploitation as the pandemic restrictions lift. Plans set out in a new consultation will deliver on the manifesto commitment to ‘give the Competition and Markets Authority enhanced powers to tackle ...

Tax Diary August/September 2021

1 August 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 October 2020. 19 August 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 August 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 August 2021) 19 August 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Tax-free property and trading income

You can claim up to £1,000 each tax year in tax-free allowances for property or trading income. If you have both types of income, you will qualify for a £1,000 allowance for each. If your annual gross property income is £1,000 or less, from one or more property businesses you will not have to tell ...

Sponsoring a charity

Charity sponsorship payments are different from donations because your company gets something related to your business in return. Typically, your business brand would be promoted by the charity in some way. You can deduct sponsorship payments from your business profits before you pay tax by treating them as business expenses. Payments qualify as business expenses ...

Business entertaining and tax relief

Expenditure on business entertainment is not allowable as a deduction against profits. Nor may a deduction be made for any expenditure which is incidental to business entertainment. The meaning of ‘incidental’ is not defined by HMRC but should be interpreted to mean any expenditure that is incurred directly or indirectly in connection with the provision ...

VAT – Second-hand cars – using the Margin Scheme

If you sell second-hand vehicles and you were not charged VAT when you purchased the vehicle, using the Margin Scheme will save you money. If you did not use the VAT Margin Scheme, you would have to account for VAT on the full selling price of each vehicle. However, if you use the Margin Scheme, ...

The furlough cliff edge

Unless government has a change of heart the present furlough scheme will close 30 September 2021. Businesses that have depended on this grant to hold teams together will – from 1 October – need to decide if business activity has increased sufficiently to maintain their workforces at current levels or consider redundancy options. Planning is ...

Government acknowledges HGV driver shortage

In an open letter to the UK logistics sector, the Government has announced an urgent initiative to resolve the mounting shortage of lorry drivers in the UK. Following Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic, thousands of EU nationals – who make up a significant proportion of workers in the UK logistics industry – are having to ...

Time to check Minimum Wage Rates?

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has issued a statement urging students and other summer workers to check that they are being paid the correct National Minimum Wage (NMW) rates. In the 2020/21 tax year, HMRC helped over 150,000 workers across the UK to recover over £16 million remuneration that was due to them because incorrect ...

Claiming for work-related expenses

The tax office is now open for claims from employees that have incurred work-related costs for the year to 5 April 2021 and have not been – and will not be – reimbursed by their employers. How to make a claim – the DIY approach You can claim online, by post or by phone. This ...

Is inflation something to be concerned about?

Inflation is a measure of how much the value of currency depreciates each year. For example, if prices for a loaf of bread rise by 3% in a year, you would have to earn that extra 3% to continue to purchase bread, so your extra earnings would have no extra value. According to the Bank ...

Is July 19th freedom-day?

Next week, many of the present lockdown regulations in England are being relaxed. But cautionary guidance has also been published. It recommends: Meeting in well-ventilated areas where possible, such as outdoors or indoors with windows open. Wearing a face covering where you meet people you do not normally meet in enclosed and crowded spaces. Washing ...

Business rates overall for England

One of the largest fixed costs associated with business premises are rates payments to local authorities. The present system for reviewing rates in England is somewhat antiquated, the last review in England was 2017. The government had previously undertaken to move to more frequent revaluations, having introduced legislation to bring forward the next revaluations to ...

Furlough support changed 1 July 2021

Employers will need to start contributing to work not done by furloughed employees from 1 July 2021. The update from HMRC is reproduced below: From 1 July 2021, the level of grant will be reduced, and you will be asked to contribute towards the cost of your furloughed employees’ wages. To be eligible for the ...

Tax Diary July/August 2021

1 July 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 September 2020. 6 July 2021 – Complete and submit forms P11D return of benefits and expenses and P11D(b) return of Class 1A NICs. 19 July 2021 – Pay Class 1A NICs (by the 22 July 2021 if paid electronically). 19 ...

Taking goods abroad to sell?

You must declare goods that you take with you to sell outside the UK – for example if they are in your baggage or in a private vehicle. There is a different process if you take goods abroad temporarily (for example samples for a trade fair) or use a courier or freight forwarder. Most countries ...

Beware tax credit renewal scams

Tax credits applicants should be vigilant and alert to potential scams, HMRC has warned. In the 12 months to 30 April 2021, HMRC responded to more than 1,154,300 referrals of suspicious contact from the public. More than 576,960 of these offered bogus tax rebates. In the same period, HMRC has worked with telecoms companies and ...

What is the Unclaimed Estates List?

If an individual dies and for whatever reason executors or the Treasury Solicitor’s department are unable to track down beneficiaries, the unclaimed estate falls under the care of the Bona Vacantia and Government Legal Department. The Division publishes a list of unclaimed estates which have been recently referred, but not yet administered, and historic cases ...

July 19th – normality to be resumed?

Release from social distancing restrictions, in England, is deferred until 19 July 2021, which for most of us, means no change up to that date. We are still required to work from home when we can and maintain the other Step 3 social distancing provisions. However, there are a few additional concessions that will apply ...

Business risk is increasing

COVID disruption has added a further layer to the business risk cake. Do you know how many of your customers are at risk of failure? It is estimated that between 20% and 30% of small businesses, and a sprinkling of larger concerns, will cease to trade as we start to emerge from COVID lockdown; if ...

Payroll – late filing penalties 2021-22

HMRC have issued the following comments on their adoption of a risk-based penalty strategy for 2021-22. They said: Following HMRC’s review of the effectiveness of the risk-based approach to late filing PAYE and late payment penalties, we can confirm this approach will continue for the 2021 to 2022 tax year. This means that late filing ...

Informed v guesswork

First, let’s define these terms. “informed” – a decision or judgement based on an understanding of the facts of the situation. “guesswork” the process or results of estimating or concluding something without sufficient information to be sure of being correct. And between these two extremes varying degrees of certainty will apply. From a business point ...

Ready for tax payments next month?

January and July are positive cash flow months for the UK Treasury as a number of significant taxes fall due for collection. Next month, July 2021, taxpayers may need to settle the following liabilities: 1 July 2021, companies with corporation tax due for the year end date 30 September 2020, will need to pay corporation ...

Beware bogus contacts from HMRC

None of us are particularly thrilled to receive communications from HMRC, but fraudulent contacts, by email and other means, are becoming commonplace and innocent members of the public are being left out of pocket. According to HMRC, in the 12 months to 30 April 2021, they responded to more than 1,154,300 referrals of suspicious contact ...

VAT Deferral Scheme deadline

The online portal for the new VAT payment scheme closes on 21 June 2021. Over half a million businesses deferred £34 billion in VAT payments due between March and June 2020 under the VAT Payment Deferral Scheme. Businesses had until 31 March 2021 to pay this deferred VAT or, if they could not afford to ...

Outlook for employment

Government continues to be optimistic about the outlook for employment. In a recent press release they said: “Furlough numbers have fallen to their lowest level this year, according to official statistics published 3 June, as the number of people relying on the scheme fell to 3.4 million.” And yet that is still 3.4 million who ...

The 7-year rule

If there is any Inheritance Tax to pay on gifts you make during your lifetime, it is charged at 40% on gifts given in the 3 years before you die. Gifts made 3 to 7 years before your death are taxed on a reducing, sliding scale known as ‘taper relief’. Years between gift and death ...

Tax Diary June/July 2021

1 June 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 August 2020. 19 June 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 June 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 June 2021) 19 June 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Importing goods for the first time?

If you are new to the import process the following check list will provide you with a rough guide to what you need to do: You need an EORI number that starts with GB to import goods into England, Wales or Scotland. You will need a new one if you have an EORI that does ...

Furlough scheme ends September 2021

There are still a significant number of UK employees that are furloughed. Unfortunately, this scheme is scheduled to end 30 September 2021. Businesses that are struggling to re-establish themselves following the downside effects of repeated lockdown, may be faced with difficult decisions as this deadline approaches. The pundits are expecting a significant rise in the ...

Prepare benefit in kind returns to HMRC

Next month, as you will see from the Tax Diary notes for July, employers that provide any form of taxable benefit to clients will need to prepare and file P11D returns to HMRC. The deadline to file is 6 July 2021. You will also need to provide employees affected with a copy of their P11D ...

Package holiday refunds

Package holiday companies have been instructed to respect the refund rights of holidaymakers ahead of the summer period. In a recent press release, this is what the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said: The CMA has published a further open letter to the sector and also sent it directly to the 100 package travel firms ...

Update on the Trade Credit Reinsurance scheme

The government and the Association of British Insurers (ABI) have announced that the temporary Trade Credit Reinsurance (TCR) scheme will close on 30 June as planned. TCR was designed as a temporary solution for companies struggling to get insurance cover for transactions because of the pandemic. It is now ending in the context of a ...

Company super-deductions and tax increases

One of the more innovative aspects of the recent March budget was the introduction of the rather grandly named super-deduction. Limited companies that invest in qualifying assets in the two-year period 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2023, will be eligible for a 130% tax write-off. What this means is that if you buy say ...

Firm Merger

Following the announcement of the merger of Langdon West Williams and Harmer Slater Limited, Langdon West Williams is now a division of and will trade under the Harmer Slater Limited brand. The new combined business will bring together expertise to provide a comprehensive range of accounting advisory, assurance and tax services tailored to organisations of ...

New tariff suspension scheme for the UK

To reduce costs for UK firms that import certain goods from abroad, the Department for International Trade (DIT) has announced a new tariff suspension scheme. The aim, according to a recent press release, is designed to make UK companies more competitive. The published details of the scheme are reproduced below: From next month, firms based ...

New rules to curb pension scammers.

The government is helping shut the door on social media scammers trying to plunder people’s pensions under new scam prevention measures due this autumn. Under the plans, suspicious requests could be stopped if pensions savers have been approached to access or transfer their savings uninvited via social media. Such unsolicited contact would trigger a “red ...

How the lockdown rules are changing from 17th May

Fingers crossed that the present rise of the Indian COVID variant is restricted to localised outbreaks and that the intended relaxation of lockdown will generally go ahead as planned from 17th May. It would be a cruel irony if businesses that have been stocking up and training staff were told they could not open after ...

Did you overclaim the SEISS grant?

A reminder that HMRC have set out detailed guidance for the self-employed who may have over-claimed any of their Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grants. The guidance is reproduced below: You must tell HMRC if, when you made the claim, you were not eligible for the grant. For example: for the first or second grant, ...

Running a limited company

Limited companies are owned by shareholders and managed by directors. Very often, especially in the case of smaller companies, the owners and managers (shareholders and directors) are the same persons. Unfortunately, each has separate roles and responsibilities. For example, as a director of a limited company you must: follow the company’s rules, shown in its ...

Are your Child Benefits under threat?

For some time now, HMRC have had the power to claw back some or all of the Child Benefits you receive if either parent’s income exceeds £50,000. The benefit is recovered by the High Income Child Benefit Charge (HICBC). This states that if either parent had income over £50,000 and: either partner received Child Benefit, ...

Tax Diary May/June 2021

1 May 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 July 2020. 19 May 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 May 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 May 2021). 19 May 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Advisory Fuel Rates from 1 March 2021

The advisory electricity rate for fully electric cars is 4 pence per mile. Hybrid cars are treated as either petrol or diesel cars for advisory fuel rates. The advisory fuel rates for petrol, LPG and diesel cars are shown in these tables. From 1 March 2021 You can use the previous rates for up to ...

Averaging profits for creators of literary or artistic works

A special relief is available for creators of literary or artistic works under which they can claim to add together their profits for 2 years and be taxable on the average of those profits if certain conditions are met. This helps to even out fluctuating tax charges for creative persons who may pay little tax ...

Charity – using a subsidiary trading company

One or more charities can set up a subsidiary trading company to trade on their behalf. This may be a useful strategy if your charity: makes profits on trading that is not linked to its primary purpose makes a profit that comes close to or is higher than the small trading tax exemption limit wants ...

A new government-backed loan scheme

A new Recovery Loan Scheme was launched 6 April 2021, to provide much needed liquidity to businesses affected by COVID lockdown measures. Under the scheme, loans of up to £10m are available. The minimum facility sizes vary, starting at £1,000 for asset and invoice finance, and £25,001 for term loans and overdrafts. Potentially, these loans ...

Data Protection obligations

Everyone in business that handles personal data must register for data protection purposes with the Information Commissioners Office. Most business will need to pay an annual fee of £40 or £60 but this can rise to £2,900. Some organisations only pay £40 regardless of their size and turnover. These are: charities and small occupational pension ...

Beware trading into insolvency

The present pandemic has created just the right conditions for certain businesses to trade their way into insolvency. As we start the gradual withdrawal from lockdown, consumers will be on the lookout to spend after months of enforced home “arrest”. This will likely fuel an increase in economic activity on an unprecedented scale as we ...

New build your own home funding

Considering a home build? It would seem that government is keen to support this activity as they have just announced new plans to provide over £150 million in new government funding. This is aimed to make it easier and more affordable for people to build their own homes. The ‘Help to Build’ scheme will ensure ...

New Recovery Loan Scheme

A new government backed loan scheme was launched 6 April 2021. A recent news story confirming the details is reproduced below: The scheme, which was announced at budget and runs until 31 December 2021, will be administered by the British Business Bank, with loans available through a diverse network of accredited commercial lenders.   26 ...

The new Mortgage Guarantee Scheme

The mortgage guarantee scheme that was announced March 2021 is intended as a temporary measure. It will be open for new mortgage applications from April 2021 to December 2022, in line with the government’s view that the current scarcity of high loan-to-value lending is primarily a response to the pandemic rather than a symptom of ...

National Insurance cut for employers of veterans

A National Insurance contributions holiday for businesses who employ armed forces veterans comes into force 6 April 2021. The policy allows employers to claim National Insurance contributions relief for veterans they have hired during their first year of civilian employment after leaving the armed forces. Who qualifies? Employers will only be able to claim National ...

Lockdown rule changes 12 April 2021

On 12 April, the rules that government has required us to follow to combat COVID-19, changed. From that date: non-essential retail will be able to reopen personal care premises such as hairdressers and nail salons will be able to reopen public buildings such as libraries and community centres will be able to reopen outdoor hospitality ...

Tax Diary April/May 2021

1 April 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 June 2020. 19 April 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 April 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 April 2021) 19 April 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Challenges for 2021-22

The new tax year starts 6 April 2021, and without dwelling too much on the historical trickery that has landed us with this odd commencement date, what are the challenges we will need to grapple with in the coming year? Keeping clear of COVID Pretty obvious really, no-one would willingly risk a dose of COVID-19 ...

New National Minimum Wage rates apply from 1 April 2021

Employers who have employees paid at the National Living Wage (NLW) or National Minimum Wage (NMW) rates should be applying new rates of pay from 1 April 2021. In full, the increases from April 1, 2021 are: NLW (23 ) has increased 2.2%, from £8.72 to £8.91 NMW (21-22) has increased 2%, from £8.20 to ...

Small Business Brexit Support Fund

Since 15 March 2021, smaller businesses can apply for grants of up to £2,000 to help them adapt to new customs and tax rules when trading with the EU. The £20 million SME Brexit Support Fund enables traders to access practical support, including training for new customs, rules of origin and VAT processes. Small and ...

Furlough scheme changes from 1 July 2021

The government has confirmed its intention that furloughed employees will be paid 80% of their wages for hours not worked under the furlough scheme. Up to 30 June 2021, this payment will be fully-funded by government and capped at £2,500 per month. From 1 July 2021, employers are required to contribute 10% of the 80% ...

Temporary extension of loss relief carry-backs

Many businesses across the UK are likely to make losses in the 2020-21 tax year due to the havoc resulting from COVID disruption. Which was why the announcement in the recent Budget that losses can be carried back for an extended period was most welcome. The policy objective aims to provide a cashflow benefit to ...

Recently self-employed?

If you became self-employed after 5 April 2019 and you have submitted your 2019-20 tax return before 2 March 2021, you may be eligible for the next two Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grants for the quarter end 30 April 2021 and the final claims period to 30 September 2021. HMRC has announced that they ...

Super-deductions, what are they?

Perhaps the most innovative give-away in the recent budget was “Super-deductions for investment expenditure”. What does this mean? Companies that invest in qualifying plant and machinery in the period from 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2023 will benefit from enhanced capital allowances. Investments in assets that qualify for the main rate of capital allowances ...

New funding for high streets and seaside resorts

The government has announced new measures to support a safe and successful reopening of the high streets and seaside resorts ahead of the summer season. A new £56 million Welcome Back Fund will help councils boost tourism, improve green spaces and provide more outdoor seating areas, markets and food stall pop-ups – giving people safer ...

The Finance Bill 2021

An outline of the Finance Bill 2021 has been published and provides the legal framework for changes announced in the recent Budget. We have reproduced below the published text. This is subject to scrutiny by parliament and may change before the Bill receives Royal Assent. The Bill will ensure a number of tax changes set ...

HMRC clarifies furlough queries

HMRC has recently clarified the action you need to take if you have claimed too little or too much under the furlough scheme (Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme). They are published in a FAQ format. Here’s what they say: What if I’ve claimed too much in error? If you have claimed too much CJRS grant and ...

What are Super-Deductions?

Most company business owners understand that if you incur a cost that is wholly and exclusively for the purpose of your trade, then it can be deducted from your taxable profits or added to tax losses. Likewise, if companies invest in plant or other equipment that qualifies for tax relief, even though the expenditure is ...

Pension pot top-ups before 6 April 2021

The 2020/21 tax year comes to an end on 5 April 2021. As this date approaches, it is prudent to review your pension contributions and consider whether it would be beneficial to top up your pension before the end of the tax year. Is there a limit on tax-relieved contributions? Yes — tax relief is ...

SEISS – the net widens

One aspect of the recent budget will please self-employed business owners that have previously been unable to claim under the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) as they commenced trading after 5 April 2019. As long as you submitted your self-assessment tax return for 2019-20 before midnight 2 March 2021, and you meet the other qualifying ...

Stealth Tax

You may have noticed that a certain phrase came up more than once in the Chancellor’s Budget speech last week. The phrase went something like this: Allowances/rates will be frozen at this level until April 2026. That’s four years of flat-lining rates and allowances and it applies to income tax, capital gains tax, inheritance tax ...

Tax Diary March/April 2021

1 March 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 May 2020. 2 March 2021 – Self-assessment tax for 2019/20 paid after this date will incur a 5% surcharge. 19 March 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 March 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically ...

Minimum Wage levels from April 2021

From April 2021, the National Living Wage (NLW) will be the statutory minimum wage for workers aged 23 and over. It currently applies to workers aged 25 and over. The reduction in the NLW age threshold follows a review of the structure of the National Minimum Wage youth rates and recommendations made by the Low ...

Exporters – simplified declarations

You can make a simplified declaration before you export your goods. This is called ‘presenting’ your goods to customs. The first part of your declaration does not need as much information as a full declaration. When it’s approved, you can export your goods or move them from your premises. You will still need to give ...

Marriage Allowance claim

HMRC published the following press release on Valentine’s Day 2021. HMRC is encouraging married couples and people in civil partnerships to sign up for a tax break this year. Marriage Allowance offers individuals the chance to transfer part of their Personal Allowance to their husband, wife or civil partner, which could reduce their tax by ...

Tax breaks working from home

Employed persons If your employer requires that you work from home, this will apply to many employees during the various COVID lock-down periods, HMRC will allow you to claim for any extra costs associated with working from home. To save you calculating what these extra costs might be, HMRC has agreed a claim based on ...

Spring Budget 2021 Summary

COVID-19 related support measures for UK businesses The Treasury is to continue the two existing major support schemes in an attempt to hold back a significant increase in unemployment rates as business owners grapple with the effects of COVID-19 disruption. Details are set out below. Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme This scheme, nicknamed the Furlough Scheme, ...

Gender gap closing in UK board rooms

More than a third (34.3%) of FTSE 350 board positions are now held by women, with the number of women on boards increasing by 50% over the last 5 years, data released today (Wednesday 24 February) shows, representing a dramatic shift in representation at the very highest levels of British business. The data has been ...

Challenges as we emerge from lockdown

There is no guarantee that the heady mix of vaccination and easing of lockdown will contain the spread of COVID-19. However, based on government predictions, they are willing to start the process of easing lockdown restrictions. The relaxation of restrictions will depend on four tests. They are: The vaccine deployment programme continues successfully. Evidence shows ...

Supreme Court determines Uber drivers are workers

In a landmark decision handed out by the Supreme Court last week, the respondents, Yaseen Aslam, James Farrer, Robert Dawson and others have had their claim upheld that they are “workers” and not self-employed drivers for Uber; as such they qualify for rights under the Employment Rights Act, the Minimum Wage Act and Working Time ...

Do you qualify for the fourth SEISS grant?

To qualify for the Self-Employed Support Scheme HMRC expects you to make an honest assessment about whether you reasonably believe your business will have a significant reduction in profits as well as meeting financial considerations based on previously submitted tax returns. The closing date for the third grant – 1 November 2020 to 29 January ...

Tax claims if working from home

Many employed persons will have spent a large chunk of the current tax year, 2020-21, working from home due to COVID restrictions. HMRC will accept a claim to cover any additional costs you may have incurred. Must be required to work from home You may be able to claim tax relief for additional household costs ...

UK Pensions Bill receives Royal Assent

The UK Pensions Act will bolster protections for savers and further the government’s green agenda by supporting progress towards net zero. New powers to penalise errant bosses The Act will strengthen protections for pension savers by extending the powers of the Pensions Regulator, introducing the power to issue civil penalties of up to £1 million, ...

Prospects for 2021

The short-term outlook for UK businesses operating in sectors badly affected by the present COVID lock-down directives is not good. Many cannot trade, many others are facing reduced turnover. Both will be struggling to maintain reserves – stay solvent – and cash-flow. There are strategies that affected businesses can use to reduce fixed costs and ...

New UK subsidies to replace EU State Aid

The following announcement provides encouragement that a replacement for the EU State Aid process is in development. Details from a recent Government press release are set out below. A new UK-wide system for providing more flexible and tailored financial support to businesses has been set out under plans by the Business Secretary, taking advantage of ...

Current tax year will still end 5 April 2021

It is doubtful that HMRC will change the tax year end date. The current tax year will therefore come to an end on 5 April 2021. Which means that tax-payers still have two months (February and March 2021) to take advantage of any tax planning strategies that may advantage their tax liabilities for 2020-21. As ...

Tax office moves the penalty spot

During the last week of January, HMRC finally accepted that many tax-payers would not make the filing deadline – 31 January 2021 – for their 2019-20 self-assessment tax return; due, in the main, to continuing COVID disruption. As a gesture, they have confirmed that: Self-Assessment tax-payers who cannot file their tax return by the 31 ...

Tax Diary February/March 2021

1 February 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax payable for the year ended 30 April 2020. 19 February 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 February 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 February 2021) 19 February 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Did you defer VAT payments last year?

If you took advantage of the offer to defer VAT payments falling due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020 – to help out with the impact of COVID disruption – your now have three choices. You can: pay the deferred VAT in full on or before 31 March 2021 opt in to the ...

Repay private petrol and save tax

At first sight, company cars drivers whose private fuel costs are met by their employers may seem to be onto a good thing, but there is a nasty tax hit… Enter, the Car Fuel Benefit charge. When the current tax year ends, 5 April 2021, the illustration below demonstrates how a cash payment to an ...

Online payment plans

Almost 25,000 Self-Assessment customers have set up an online payment plan to manage their tax liabilities in up to 12 monthly instalments, totalling £69.1 million, HMRC revealed recently. In October, HMRC increased the threshold for self-serve Time to Pay arrangements from £10,000 to £30,000 for Self-Assessment taxpayers. Once they have completed their 2019-20 tax return ...

Reminder of CIS VAT changes

Contractors and subcontractors registered for VAT and the Construction Industry Scheme will need to use the VAT reverse charge process for building and construction services from 1 March 2021. VAT registered subcontractors affected by this change will no longer add VAT to their invoices to contractors. Instead, the contractors’ accounting system will need to add ...

Business relief for Inheritance Tax

It is possible that your estate will pay no IHT on the valuation of any business assets. The amount of relief available depends on the type of assets held at death. Your estate may be able to claim 50% or possibly 100% relief. You can get 100% Business Relief on: a business or interest in ...

Do you continue to trade with the EU?

Government have set out a list of six actions that all businesses who continue to trade with EU customers or suppliers should complete now that the formal transition has ended.. The list is: Goods – if you import or export goods to the EU, you must get an EORI number, make customs declarations or employ ...

Private residence, court actions available on separation or divorce

Couples may have experienced the difficulties that can arise when couples separate or divorce. One area where they may need to resolve are the options that courts have to direct ownership of the marital home. The courts can exercise their jurisdiction in the following ways. By recognising an existing equitable interest of the spouse or ...

Consider online tax payment plans

January is the month that taxpayers registered for self-assessment need to pay their taxes. Usually, this amounts to any underpayment for the previous tax year and a first payment on account for the current tax year. Unfortunately, HMRC will base their payment on account for 2020-21 on the self-assessment liability for the previous tax year, ...

Why go digital?

There is a major advantage to recording business transactions digitally; once the basic data has been entered it can be interrogated and represented in endless types of reports. During the present COVID disruption this ability to drill down or summarise data should be used to support business owners in making appropriate decisions. Accounting software, used ...

Business Lock-down summary January 2021

We have prepared the following lists from information published on the GOV.UK website. It sets out which businesses are required to close, and which can remain open during the current COVID lock-down. Those required to close face compounded financial difficulties as their ability to create revenue is at best restricted and in many cases stopped ...

Is your 2019-20 tax return filed?

Readers who have not yet filed their 2019-20 self-assessment tax return for 2019-20 have less than one month to do so. The online filing deadline is 31 January 2021. Could clients reading this article, who have not supplied all the information we have requested to complete their outstanding 2019-20 returns, please contact us with any ...

Best wishes for 2021

The turning of the old year into the potential for the new year has usually generated the Happy New Year salutation. And indeed, we do wish our readers all the very best for 2021. But what challenges we face. Will schools reopen, are we facing a further national lock-down, will our already extended business owners ...

The transition period has ended

From the beginning of this month the Brexit transition period has ended. Negotiations to secure a trade agreement between the UK and the EU from 1 January 2021, have completed and we have a deal. Readers who import or export goods from or to the EU will now need to face the following challenges in ...

Tax Diary January/February 2021

1 January 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 March 2020. 19 January 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 January 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 January 2021) 19 January 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Strategies for the self-employed

The end of the calendar year is a popular accounting date for many businesses, but for those of us with a year-end accounting date of 31 March 2020, reviewing your management accounts for the nine months to the end of December 2020 can have real benefits. For example: If you are self-employed and for the ...

The end is nigh

In just three short months the present tax year – 2020-21 – will end midnight, 5th April 2021. The UK’s tax code is predominantly time limited. Any reliefs and exemptions from UK taxes for 2020-21 will mostly expire at the end of the tax year. Accordingly, there is an imperative to review your tax affairs ...

Scammers posing as HMRC

We already have more than our fair share of adversity to deal with at present, don’t let criminals add to your woes by defrauding you of hard-earned cash resources. HMRC has recently published a warning to taxpayers about scammers posing as HMRC employees. They said: Self-Assessment customers should be alert to criminals claiming to be ...

Concerned about tax payments due 31 January 2021?

UK taxpayers that file a tax return will need to pay a variety of self-assessment tax and NIC liabilities that will fall due at the end of January 2021. They include:   · The second payment on account for 2019-20 if deferred when first due 31 July 2020. · Any balance of taxes unpaid for ...

Parting shot from the Chancellor

For a man that has admitted he has concerns about the level of government funding committed to the support of businesses during the last nine months, Rishi Sunak’s disclosure last week that he is extending the furlough scheme to the end of April 2021 points to a deepening concern in government that we are not ...

Looks like we are heading for a no-deal exit from the EU

If the following criteria apply, this is what our government recommend that you do from 1 January 2021: You: Are British Live and work in the UK Travel to the EU for business reasons Have no plans in the short-term to travel abroad for holidays Do not plan to move to the EU Run and/or ...

Accounting for import VAT on your VAT return

From 1 January 2021, if your business is registered for VAT in the UK, you will need to consider how to treat VAT added to imports from the EU. Accounting for import VAT on your VAT Return means you will declare and recover import VAT on the same VAT Return, rather than having to pay ...

Possible crackdown on unfair employment clauses

The following update is copied from a government press release recently issued by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. New proposed measures to allow workers’ greater freedom to find new or additional work were unveiled by Business Secretary Alok Sharma 4 December 2020. In a major win for the UK’s lowest paid workers, ...

What have we learnt from 2020?

To answer this question, we should take a look at a few adjectives that have been used to describe COVID-19’s effects on our personal and business lives. For example, unexpected, unprecedented, disruptive… Prior to the pandemic we assumed that tomorrow would turn out much like yesterday. Many businesses had become accustomed to managing cash flow ...

Summary of spending review 2021-22

A summary of the business elements of the recent Spending Review for next year are set out below: Continuing the UK’s recovery from coronavirus The Spending Review has set out the government’s intention to maintain support to protect jobs, businesses and livelihoods, while stimulating the UK’s economic recovery. In the Spending Review the government has ...

Tax Diary December 2020/January 2021

1 December 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax payable for the year ended 28 February 2020. 19 December 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 December 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 December 2020) 19 December 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Customs changes from 1 January 2021

Most smaller businesses will not have the resources to train and employ their own customs clearance staff in which case you may have to consider using a customs agent or broker. We have reproduced the advice on the GOV.UK website on this critical issue below. If you do import or export goods from and to ...

Trivial benefits are not so trivial

A reminder that It is possible to make small tax-free payments to employees, including directors, and this might be an appropriate time to make a small tax-free bonus in advance of the annual Christmas, New Year holidays. Employers and employees don’t have to pay tax on small benefits provided they comply with the following rules: ...

Self-Assessment filing deadline draws near

If you have still not submitted all of the information we need to complete your 2019-20 tax return, could we ask you to respond as soon as you can as the deadline is fast approaching – 31 January 2021. HMRC has made no announcement that this deadline will be extended. Accordingly, the initial £100 late ...

More on extended furlough scheme

Most employers who are eligible will be aware that the furlough scheme (the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme) has been extended for five months – from 1 November 2020 to 31 March 2021. The general terms for the first quarter to 31 January 2021 are: Maximum claim per employee is 80% of hours not worked. Furlough ...

Employers note increase in National Living Wage

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, confirmed a small increase in the National Living Wage rates from April 2021. Employers will need to diarise these increases otherwise they may break their obligation to pay these rates and risk penalties. The increase in the NLW will mean that low-paid workers’ incomes rise broadly in line with predicted wage ...

Are you ready for 1 January 2021?

When we awake to the new year we will no longer be in transition; we will be out of the EU and will have to cope with a wide range of regulatory changes if we buy or sell goods or services to EU suppliers and customers. The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy recently ...

Furlough claims from 1 November 2020

If you are making claims under the extended furlough scheme from 1 November 2020 you need to be aware of changes in the claims process. Perhaps the most significant is that claims need to be registered within 14 days of the relevant period end. In their revised guidance on this topic HMRC say: You can ...

Are you eligible for further self-employed grants?

Two quarterly grants have been paid to UK self-employed traders that qualify for the Self- Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS). These covered the periods up to 31 October 2020. The Chancellor has announced that two further quarterly payments will be made. Traders will still need to qualify for the payments and in particular: Have been ...

Current businesses subject to lock-down

We have reproduced below a list of businesses which must close during the period 5 November to 2 December 2020. Business based in England and required to close To reduce social contact, the regulations require some businesses to close and impose restrictions on how some businesses provide goods and services. These include: Non-essential retail, such ...

Are you eligible for Universal Credit?

What to do if you are placed in a financial position where you do not have sufficient income to meet your monthly outgoings and you are unable to find work to plug the gap. The main government assistance for those who find themselves in this position is to register for Universal Credits. The following notes ...

Government financial support extended

Government financial support for UK businesses affected by the COVID pandemic have been extended in the past week. Thankfully, relief for employees of affected companies and the self-employed have been announced in tandem. A short summary of the main changes follows: Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) This furlough scheme will now be extended until the ...

Get ready for end of EU transition period

Government have recently promoted their online webinars that aim to support businesses who will be affected by the end of the EU exit transition period, 31 December 2020. Here’s what the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial activity have to say: Over 3,000 people have attended government webinars to help them get ready for the ...

Are you making the most of your accounts data?

Many of us have taken the step from manual to digital accounting systems. But are you making the most of features provided? Without a doubt, accounts software offers a wealth of reports many of which will likely be of limited use to businesses, however, many will be of use. There is a temptation to stick ...

Tax Diary November/December 2020

1 November 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 January 2020. 19 November 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 November 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 November 2020.) 19 November 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Make hay while higher rate relief is available

For many years Chancellors have threatened to reduce the Income Tax relief that can be claimed for payments into a private pension scheme. There have been reductions in the amount of contributions that can be made and the size of the pension fund that can be accumulated, but thus far, allowable contributions may still attract ...

How much of your estate will be taxed?

The present rate of Inheritance Tax (IHT) that is payable by your executors on your taxable estate is 40%. The good news is that you can reduce the impact of this tax, which effectively reduces the amount of your hard-won assets that is received by your beneficiaries. For example: The first £325,000 is tax-free. This ...

Students warned to avoid tax scams

Readers with children at university should pass on this message as students starting university this year are being warned by HMRC that they could be targeted by a fresh wave of tax scams. As new students start the academic year, they can be particularly vulnerable to cybercrime. With universities taking a blended approach to online ...

Cash back at all shops

Brits will be able to get cashback from shops without needing to buy anything under new proposals to protect the UK’s cash system announced 15 October 2020. Under the government proposals, cashback without a purchase could be widely available from retailers of all sizes in local communities across the UK. Although cash use is declining, ...

Tax return reminder

HMRC have recently published a press release entitled “Just 100 days left for Self -Assessment”. Before readers make the obvious connection, that this heralds the end of tax returns in the UK, it is purely a reminder that 2019-20 Self-Assessment returns need to be filed by 31 January 2021. Gathering together the information to complete ...

The Job Support Scheme options – open and closed

The revised Job Support Scheme (JSS) announced in the last few days comes in two varieties: Open and Closed. JSS Open Businesses in Tier 2 areas, that suffer the restrictions to sociability rules, never-the-less are not required to close. This is an insidious outcome for these traders, particularly those in the hospitality sector, as they ...

Export Growth Plan to help businesses

A package of measures to help businesses in England build back better following the pandemic was recently announced by the Government. The Department for International Trade’s (DIT) Export Growth Plan provides additional financial support and expertise, some of which is targeted towards specific regions that are most in need. The plan includes a £38 million ...

Planning a new business?

If you are starting to give serious consideration to setting up your own business one of the issues you will need to consider is the type of business structure that best fits your planned business activity. How risky is your business? All business activity involves a certain degree of risk. Many of these risks can ...

New Freeports to complement post-Brexit trade

The government has outlined new plans for Freeports to turbo-charge post-Brexit trade. Details have been released that assert a number of new freeports are being planned across the UK. The first new Freeport is on track to open by the end of 2021. Responding to the consultation on the proposals the government confirmed that sea, ...

New rules for debt letters

The letters borrowers receive from their lenders when they are seriously behind on repayments will be easier to understand and less intimidating as a result of new rules proposed by the Treasury last week. The aim is to reduce stress and anxiety that borrowers may experience if they are unable to keep up with repayments ...

Extension of the Job Support Scheme

This extended support will be available to businesses across the UK that are required to close their premises due to coronavirus restrictions. Businesses required to close as a result of specific workplace outbreaks by local public health authorities are not eligible to claim under this extended JSS scheme. To make a claim, employers must have ...

Have you over-claimed for COVID related support grants?

Readers who may have inadvertently over-claimed grants, the furlough scheme for example, should remedy the situation before HMRC start pro-actively investigating claims. The Finance Act 2020, contains an amnesty for notifying HMRC of any errors or overclaims within 90 days of the later of: any tax charge being payable due to the overclaim and the ...

New measures to sort late payers

New proposals have been outlined by government to ensure small businesses in the UK are paid on time. Currently £23.4 billion worth of late invoices are owed to small firms across Britain, impacting on businesses’ cash flow and ultimate survival. The proposals, as part of a new consultation launched 1 October 2020, look to give ...

Tax Diary October/November 2020

1 October 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 December 2019. 19 October 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 October 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 October 2020.) 19 October 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Smart Data laws on the way?

Consumers and small businesses will benefit from better deals and savings through innovative services, thanks to new Smart Data laws proposed by government. Smart Data enables businesses to provide consumers with more intuitive, easy-to-use services such as better account and bill management, switching services for savings, and targeted support for vulnerable consumers, by allowing businesses ...

Are you recording customers’ contact details?

In a press release issued 10 September 2020, the Department for Health and Social Care has reminded affected businesses that they have a legal obligation to record the contact details of their customers, visitors and staff. Affected concerns in England should note: businesses and other public settings where people meet socially including hospitality, close contact ...

Additional grant aid for local lockdown businesses

Last month the Treasury announced further support for businesses adversely affected by lockdown in local areas to control local outbreaks. Local Authorities will be funded to pay the grants now offered. Businesses in England required to close Businesses in England required to close due to local lockdowns or targeted restrictions will now be able to ...

Annual Christmas bash?

Trying to double guess the social distancing rules is rather like placing bets on a throw of the dice. The current exhortation from the Prime Minister – to observe the rule of six – is yet a further change in the endless attempts at controlling coronavirus by manipulating social distancing regulation. But we all need ...

The new Job Support Scheme

After much head scratching at the Treasury, the son of the furlough scheme has been unveiled. Aptly called a Job Support Scheme JSS). When the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme finishes 31 October 2020, employers will need to register for the JSS which is being made available for six months from 1 November 2020. The JSS ...

100 towns to share 80 million pounds

Over 100 towns in England will be given up to £1 million to kick start regeneration projects and give areas a boost. This funding, which ranges from £500,000 up to £1 million per town, will be used to support projects that will make a difference to the area, such as new green spaces, the creation ...

The new Winter Economy Plan

Job Support Scheme A new 6-month scheme starting from 1 November 2020. This scheme has been designed to support viable jobs and employees must work at least one-third of their hours, paid as normal, in order to qualify for the scheme. The government and employer will then each cover one-third of any remaining hours the ...

Contact details or else…

Hospitality trades are now mandated to collect the contact details of customers. Which logically assumes that if a customer refuses to provide this information they must be turned away? The contact details required include: name contact number date of visit arrival time departure time, if possible All collected data must comply with GDPR and will ...

Are you ready for NHS COVID-19 app?

Pubs, restaurants, hairdressers, cinemas and other venues across England and Wales are being urged to download QR codes to prepare for public rollout of new app. The NHS COVID-19 app is currently being trialled and will launch on Thursday 24 September in England and Wales, including QR check-in at venues QR codes will be an ...

Travel corridors

It is almost impossible to keep up with changes to overseas territories that require us to self-isolate when returning to the UK from a holiday or business trip. The government have coined the phrase “travel corridor” to provide a focus for countries that are considered COVID hot spots – and therefore exempt or removed from ...

HMRC put their case

HMRC has been at the forefront of the government’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the extraordinary challenges being faced by millions of individuals and businesses. According to HMRC: The department successfully developed and implemented schemes at unprecedented speed to deliver financial support to more than 12 million employed and self-employed workers via the Coronavirus ...

Employer obligations to employees working at home

It may surprise many smaller employers with staff working from home that they still have health and safety responsibilities. The following notes published by ACAS should be considered: Employers should: talk to their employees and workers about how they might improve working from home arrangements continue to consider which roles and tasks can be done ...

Are taxes on the increase?

There has been the usual political speculation that taxes will be increased in the forthcoming budget to pay for COVID grants and support. Leaving aside the economic arguments for and against, what planning adjustments can we make now assuming that business taxes will increase? Corporation tax It has been rumoured that corporation tax (CT) will ...

Government support for certain self-isolating cases

Government is to implement a new payment for people on low incomes in areas with high rates of COVID-19, who need to self-isolate and can’t work from home. Payments of up to £182 to be made to people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and their contacts. The scheme will start in Blackburn, Darwen, Pendle, ...

E-commerce eases COVID disruption

Online sales soared by 800% for London-based start-up, OLLY’S, after losing 40% of its monthly revenue overnight due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The following was reported on the GOV>UK website recently: Founded in his parents’ kitchen three years ago, a love of olives inspired Olly Hiscocks to create the world’s first unpasteurised olive snack pouch. ...

Tax Diary September/October 2020

1 September 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 November 2019. 19 September 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 September 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 September 2020) 19 September 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Tenants protection under the Coronavirus Act 2020

From the 26 March 2020, the following rights of landlords and tenants regarding eviction apply. A summary of the provisions is set out below: The Coronavirus Act 2020 protects most tenants and secure licensees in the private and social rented sectors by putting measures in place that say where landlords do need to issue notices ...

Redundancy pay

If you are faced with making employees redundant, the terms that determine the amount payable may be written into your staff contracts of employment. Otherwise, employees will normally be entitled to statutory redundancy pay if they have been working with you for two years or more. Entitlement is usually based on: half a week’s pay ...

VAT deregistration strategy

If you are presently registered for VAT but your turnover has dropped below £83,000 you could deregister for VAT. However, you do not have to deregister. Disadvantages and advantages of deregistration If you buy significant amounts of goods and services that include a VAT charge, then if you deregister you will not be able to ...

UK residence and tax

Your UK residence status affects whether you need to pay tax in the UK on your foreign income. For example, non-residents only pay tax on their UK income – they do not pay UK tax on their foreign income. Whereas UK residents normally pay UK tax on all their income, whether it’s from the UK ...

Claiming the Job Retention Bonus

As readers will no doubt be aware the present Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is due to cease at the end of October 2020. However, there is a bonus claim that certain employers can make next year if they retain employees beyond the present 31 October 2020 deadline. The Job Retention Bonus (JRB) is subject to ...

Windfall for thrifty teenagers

Thrifty teenagers, or rather teenagers with thrifty parents, will soon gain access to their Child Trust Fund (CTFs) savings, and some, may not even know it is there…   CTFs were originally set up for children born between 1st September 2002 and 2nd January 2011, with a live Child Benefit claim. Parents and guardians received ...

Clearing myths on student loans

Students grappling with the latest A level results will no doubt be faced with decisions regarding student loans to finance their time at university if they chose that option. There are a number of myths surrounding this source of funding and in a recent news story government attempted to dispel some of these myths. They ...

Contractors urged to go green

The government is keen to sell its Green Home Grant policy to the building trade. In a recent press release Business Secretary, Alok Sharma, said: Tradespeople across England are urged to step forward and sign up to be able to offer services through the government’s new Green Homes Grants scheme – as over 1,000 businesses ...

The authorities are not asleep

It is tempting to assume that government departments are drawing back from exercising their powers to challenge taxpayers due to COVID disruption, but it would be unwise to assume this is the case. For example, in a recent legal action undertaken by the Insolvency Service, a construction boss was banned from running companies for nine ...

Tax Diary August/September 2020

1 August 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 October 2019. 19 August 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 August 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 August 2020) 19 August 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Changes to Capital Gains Tax underway?

In an update to the GOV.UK website recently the following post appeared: The Chancellor has written to the OTS (Office of Tax Simplification), to ask the OTS to undertake a review of Capital Gains Tax and aspects of the taxation of chargeable gains, in relation to individuals and smaller businesses. As well as looking at ...

Keep an eye on the numbers

Recent economic forecasts for 2020 published by H M Treasury will do little to inspire business confidence. In their comparison of independent forecasts published last month, the unemployment rate is estimated to rise to 8% and in the same period, GDP falls by 9%. The only good news is that inflation remains on the low ...

VAT changes

In an attempt to address the financial difficulties of businesses in the hospitality and tourism industries, Rishi Sunak also announced a range of VAT reductions on selected supplies for these sectors. Summary of the changes are set out below: Hospitality When you supply food and non-alcoholic beverages for consumption on your premises, between 15 July ...

Stamp duty changes- residential property

In his recent Summer Statement, Rishi Sunak announced changes to the nil rate band of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) to be applied in England and Northern Ireland. This was followed by announcements from the Scottish and Welsh regional assemblies who set the rates in Scotland and Wales. Here is a brief summary of the ...

FIx your bike voucher scheme

A Fix your Bike Voucher Scheme has been launched by the Department for Transport as an incentive to encourage the numbers of people using their bikes to commute and for leisure purposes. How the scheme works Bike repairers must be located in England. Bike repairers must meet certain eligibility criteria including the possession of valid ...

New law clarifies redundancy rights

New legislation applies from 31 July 2020 to ensure that furloughed employees receive statutory redundancy pay based on their normal wages, rather than a reduced amount based on their furloughed pay. Business owners who are considering their options – to bring back furloughed staff or consider redundancy – are now obliged to consider new legislation ...

Making Tax Digital – getting prepared

We have been waiting for some time for government to announce an extension to its Making Tax Digital (MTD) program; this they did last week. What is MTD? HMRC are keen to digitise the collection of information to calculate your tax liabilities. At present they are reliant on you submitting a variety of tax returns ...

Brexit – get someone to deal with customs for you

It seems fairly likely that we are heading for a no-deal exit from the EU, 1 January 2021. Many smaller businesses that presently import or export goods from and to the EU will need to deal with a complex raft of customs and VAT issues if they continue trade with the EU after this date. ...

Losses and loans

Many businesses in vulnerable sectors may have slipped into a loss making position following lock-down. Some of those businesses may have availed themselves of government backed “soft” loans to provide them with the cash-flow to survive the process. Even with rigorous planning to reduce costs, furlough employees and benefit from other COVID related grants, businesses ...

Audiences back in theatres from 1 August

Social distancing will be challenging theatre and other performance arts facilities as they grapple with the news announced last week that indoor performance with socially distanced audiences will be able to take place across the country from 1 August 2020. The idea that an audience can be socially distanced is mind boggling, adds a whole ...

Employers face difficult choices

The furlough scheme has enabled employers to defer decisions about their workforce – who to retain, who to let go – but as from the beginning of August 2020, employers will be obliged to meet the furlough costs on an incremental basis. Another change this month, July 2020, is that employees can be invited back ...

Time to dust-off your gym shoes and swimming togs

The government announced further easing of lock-down restrictions last week. Outdoor pools can reopen to the public from 11 July, followed by indoor gyms, pools and leisure centres on 25 July 2020. In a recent press release they said: The Government has outlined the measures that will allow outdoor pools to reopen from 11 July ...

Its tax payment time again

If you submit a self-assessment tax return you may need to consider your options as any second payments on account for 2019-20, are coming due for payment 31 July 2020. In a nut-shell you have three options:   Defer payment until 31 January 2021 As part of his support for taxpayers during the present disruption, ...

Summer Statement 8 July 2020

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak continued with his campaign to support the business and jobs community today, 8 July 2020, as firms engage with the disruption caused by the coronavirus outbreak and the measures taken to control infection. The main thrust of his announcements during his Summer Economic update concerned his nominated Plan for Jobs 2020, ...

Which businesses can reopen 4th July 2020

As the town of Leicester demonstrates, the recent announcement that many businesses would be able to reopen since 4 July 2020, depends on local conditions. Rates of infection in Leicester are causing concerns and consequently, local businesses were unable to reopen. However, for the rest of England (regional variations may apply for Scotland, Wales and ...

What happens if VAT rates are changed

A number of EU countries have reduced VAT rates in an attempt to stimulate the economy: if VAT rates fall, prices should fall encouraging consumers to spend more. There has been much press commentary recently that Rishi Sunak will announce a similar reduction in the UK. Note, at present this is pure speculation. If announced, ...

Tax Diary July/August 2020

1 July 2020 – Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 30 September 2019. 6 July 2020 – Complete and submit forms P11D return of benefits and expenses and P11D(b) return of Class 1A NICs. 19 July 2020 – Pay Class 1A NICs (by the 22 July 2020 if paid electronically). 19 ...

New support for High Street

A package of support to help high streets to get back on their feet was launched 12 June 2020. This announcement was made just days before shops were allowed to reopen on 15 June. The High Streets Task Force will provide access to cutting-edge tools, training, information and advice for high streets across England as ...

Brexit – no extension to transition period

It is now confirmed that the UK will neither accept nor seek any extension to the Transition Period. From 1 January 2020, the UK will have the autonomy to introduce its own approach to goods imported to GB from the EU. Recognising the impact of coronavirus on businesses’ ability to prepare, and following the announcement ...

Parents returning from paternity or maternal leave

One aspect of the 1 July changes to the CJRS was the closing date to new entrants was set as 30 June 2020. This disadvantaged parents who had been on extended parental or maternal leave in recent months and were intending to return to work after 30 June. The government has now confirmed that parents ...

Unwinding furlough

Last month we commented on the changes to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) that commenced at the beginning of this month (1 July 2020). Now that we have the option to bring back employees on a part-time basis and still have a measure of support for their unpaid time, what considerations should we consider ...

Lock-down independence day 4th July 2020

The changes to lock-down announced by the Prime Minister last week are summarised below. Most are effective from 4th July 2020. Pubs, restaurants and hairdressers will be able to reopen, providing they adhere to COVID Secure guidelines. From the same date, two households will be able to meet up in any setting with social distancing ...

Option to defer VAT payments ends this month

One of the government’s schemes to assist VAT registered businesses with their cashflow during the current COVID disruption was the deferral of VAT payments. The VAT payments that could be deferred cover payments due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020. VAT traders that have taken advantage of this support will have likely deferred ...

Leaving salaries or dividends in your company

Director/shareholders of small companies may be considering reducing their salaries and/or dividends during this uncertain period. Even if firms are managing to maintain profits or breakeven, prudence would suggest that until things improve we should do what ever we can to preserve cash reserves. Many directors have taken the sensible option to minimise their salaries ...

New support for High Street retailers

The High Street Task Force has launched a range of support options for High Street traders in England. In a press release issued 12 June it was announced:   A package of support to help high streets to get back on their feet has been launched ahead of shops reopening from 15 June. The High ...

Problems as we emerge from lock-down

The precautions taken by government to contain the COVID-19 outbreak, commonly known as lock-down, have created varying problem for UK businesses. As we ease our way out of lock-down many of us will have further issues to confront. This post considers some of those issues. According to the Office for National Statistics, economic activity in ...

Ban on evictions extended by two months

Renters across England and Wales will receive greater protection after the government extended the suspension of new evictions until 23 August.   The Ministry of Housing published the following press release 5 June 2020: Millions of renters across England and Wales will receive greater protection after the government extended the suspension of new evictions until ...

Furlough scheme changes clarified

HMRC released more information on the up-coming changes to the furlough scheme (CJRS) last week. A summary of two of the issues are set out below. Have you over-claimed? If you have made an error when making a claim under the CJRS and as a result you have received too much money, you must pay ...

Re-opening retail businesses from June 2020

A time-table has been announced for the re-opening of thousands of high street shops, department stores and shopping centres in England once they are COVID secure. The Prime Minister’s announcement published 25 May 2020 says: outdoor markets and car showrooms will be able to reopen from 1 June, as soon as they are able to ...

Tax Diary June/July 2020

1 June 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 August 2019. 19 June 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 June 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 June 2020) 19 June 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Trade Credit Insurance update

Trade Credit Insurance provides cover to hundreds of thousands of business to business transactions, particularly in non-service sectors, such as manufacturing and construction. It covers suppliers selling goods against the company they are selling to, defaulting on payment and giving businesses the confidence to trade with one another. Due to Coronavirus and businesses struggling to ...

Calculating holiday pay for workers without fixed hours

Government guidelines on this topic advise: The amount of pay that a worker receives for the holiday they take depends on the number of hours they work and how they are paid for those hours. The principle is that pay received by a worker while they are on holiday should reflect what they would have ...

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)

On 12 May 2020, the Chancellor confirmed that this scheme will be extended until 31 October 2020. On the 29th May he confirmed the details of how the scheme would be changed to a flexible arrangement from 1 July 2020. Until 1 September 2020, claims for time not worked will continue to be based on ...

Self-employed grants claim process now open

Since 13 May 2020, it has been possible to use online processes, accessed via the gov.uk website, to: Clarify if you are eligible to apply for the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme, and Lodge your claim. Payment should usually be in your bank account within 6 days. Are you eligible? By entering your unique tax reference ...

Changes to Self-Employed and furlough schemes

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced the following changes to the Self-Employed Income Support (SEISS) and Coronavirus Job Retention Schemes (CJRS) at the close of business last week. SEISS changes In response to lobbying by interested business groups this scheme has been extended for a final three-month period (June – August 2020). The amount being offered ...

Waiving salaries or dividends

HMRC advice for people choosing to give up their income to support their business or donate to charity during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been published. Business owners who have decided to give-up their rights to receive dividends, salary or bonuses from their companies need to follow HMRC’s guidelines to be effective. To be effective ...

Coronavirus – Business update 27 May 2020

This week, the formal process to claim back certain Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) payments is launched. From 26 May 2020, employers can register their claim using a new online process. Making a claim To use the online service, you will need the Government Gateway user ID you received when you registered for PAYE Online. If ...

Cash boost for new business start-ups

Innovative businesses and start-ups are set to benefit from a £40 million government investment to drive forward new technological advances. It was announced 20 May 2020, that government is doubling investment in the Fast Start Competition with an additional £20 million. The competition aims to fast-track the development of innovations borne out of the coronavirus ...

Social distancing at work

The following guidelines have been released to cover social distancing concerns if working in offices or call centres. The objective being to maintain 2m social distancing whenever possible. The published guidelines are: You must maintain social distancing in the workplace wherever possible. Where the social distancing guidelines cannot be followed in full in relation to ...

Title: Coronavirus – Business support updates 19 May 2020

Trade credit insurance guarantee Last week, the government announced that businesses with supply chains that rely on Trade Credit Insurance, and who are experiencing difficulties maintaining cover due to coronavirus disruption, will get support from government. In a news story released 13 May 2020, the Treasury said: Trade Credit Insurance provides cover to hundreds of ...

Six-month extension to MOT dates

A reminder that if you need to renew your vehicle MOT after 30 March 2020, the usual annual renewal date should have been extended by six-months. Conditions that apply are: Eligibility Your MOT certificate will be extended by six-months if it was due to expire on or after 30 March 2020 and your vehicle is ...

Coronavirus – Business support updates 13 May 2020

Easing back from lock-down Boris Johnson made his long-awaited statement on the government’s plans to ease lock-down (7pm, Sunday 10 May 2020). No great surprises and we have included a brief business-related summary in this post. In his address he said: And the first step is a change of emphasis that we hope that people ...

Claiming tax relief for home office expenses

In the past, claims for the costs of home office furniture and other equipment has been difficult to obtain unless your employer dictates that you must work from home. With the advent of lock-down and working from home now mandated for a large proportion of the working population, HMRC are being inundated with claims. Employees ...

Tax Diary May/June 2020

1 May 2020 – Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 30 July 2019. 19 May 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 May 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 May 2020). 19 May 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Companies House support for ailing businesses

The following announcement was recently made by Companies House: Businesses will be given additional support to help them meet their legal responsibilities under changes announced today (16 April 2020). Companies House will temporarily pause the strike off process to prevent companies being dissolved. This will give businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak the time they ...

Claiming Child Benefits for new-borns

General Register Offices are currently operating with reduced capacity and with government guidance to social distance and stay at home, new parents are advised not to visit them. They can however still claim Child Benefit without having to register their child’s birth first to ensure that they do not miss out. If they already claim ...

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

There has been considerable commentary in the media about this support initiative as business owners – struggling to cope with the reduction in their cash resources due to the COVID-19 outbreak – are finding it difficult to secure support from their bank. Readers will be encouraged by the Chancellor’s recent comments when he confirmed that ...

Self-employment income support scheme

If you are eligible, payments under the above scheme are due to be made by HMRC next month, June 2020. Readers who need financial support at an earlier date can still apply for Universal Credits as an interim measure. Who can claim under SEISS? To qualify for a payment under SEISS you will need to ...

E-publications get VAT boost

From 1 May 2020, VAT on e-publications has been scrapped. Good news for those of us who subscribe to newspapers online or buy books to read on electronic devices. The change will potentially slash the cost of e-books and newspapers making reading more accessible as people stay at home. Newspapers will also benefit from up ...

Coronavirus – Business update 4 May 2020

Low interest rates announced for Bounce-Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) This new scheme announced last week, was the subject of a letter from the Chancellor (1 May 2020) to the accredited lenders who have been instructed to facilitate the scheme since 4 May 2020. In his letter he said: In my statement to the House of ...

Do not forget to file returns for benefits and expenses

Aside from the plethora of schemes to support businesses during the coronavirus disruption, employers should not forget that there is a raft of filing obligations that still need to be met. This post lists the various employer reporting obligations regarding employee benefits and expenses for 2019-20.   The following table is reproduced from the government ...

Aggressive rent collection to be banned

High street shops and other companies under strain will be protected from aggressive rent collection and asked to pay what they can during the coronavirus pandemic. In a recent press release a government spokesperson said: “The majority of landlords and tenants are working well together to reach agreements on debt obligations, but some landlords have ...

Carry-over of unused annual leave

The rules that would have limited the rights of employees in key industries to carry forward any unused annual leave will be delighted by the announcement made two weeks ago. This will mainly apply to workers in key industries such as food and healthcare. Workers who have not taken all of their statutory annual leave ...

COVID-19 – support grants and loans update

This week has seen a flurry of changes to the various government support schemes. We have summarised a few in this article. Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) The HMRC portal – where you formally register your claim – should be live as from 20 April 2020. HMRC have published a “user” guide to the claims ...

Coronavirus – Business update

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) Employers will be relieved that the waiting is over, as of 5.30am this morning (20 April 2020), they can login to HMRC’s new portal and claim their CJRS rebate for the first pay periods. HMRC have promised that money will be in employers’ bank accounts within six working days of ...

Safety first options for manufacturing and retail sectors

Both of these sectors require people to work in close proximity to each other. Government has issues broad guidelines to reduce the risks for workers from Coronavirus. Manufacturing and processing businesses Manufacturing plays an important role in the economy. It can continue if done in accordance with the social distancing guidelines wherever possible. Where it ...

More Coronavirus tax support options

Apart from the main business and personal tax reliefs that have received publicity in the past few weeks, a number of supplementary support items have been introduced. We have highlighted two in this post.   Claiming Child Benefits for new-borns General Register Offices are currently operating with reduced capacity and with government guidance to social ...

Tax planning options for 2020-21

The 6th April marks the beginning of a new tax, and for the coming year, unprecedented challenges. As with most things in life, problems are a necessary precursor to finding solutions. We have listed below a few reminders of the issues you may want to consider as worthy of including in your 2020-21 tax planning ...

How to apply for a Business Interruption Loan

The British Business Bank has updated its guidance on how to apply for the recently changed Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). A summary follows; Who can you apply to? Most of the UK High Street banks can provide a CBILS loan facility. As your present bankers already know you and your business, for most ...

Dividends excluded from job support scheme calculations

When first announced as a news story, published by government 26 March 2020, information regarding the support scheme for the self-employed included a telling paragraph. It said: Those who pay themselves a salary and dividends through their own company are not covered by the scheme but will be covered for their salary ...

Tax Diary April/May 2020

1 April 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 June 2019. 19 April 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 April 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 April 2020). 19 April 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Changes to Entrepreneurs Relief

Prior to 11 March 2020, business owners could sell multiple, qualifying businesses during their lifetime, and as long as the total chargeable gains did not exceed £10m, a reduced rate of Capital Gains Tax of just 10% would apply. Since budget day, 11 March 2020, this lifetime allowance has been reduced to £1m. Business owners ...

Protecting cash flow – tax payments

It is unlikely that our businesses will be unaffected by the inevitable slow-down in economic activity as the Coronavirus outbreak starts to bite. Maintaining a strict control over your personal and business cash-flow is going to be a key decider in surviving this process. A major expenditure item is taxation whether that be VAT, PAYE/NIC, ...

Business rates changes

In England The government will increase the Business Rates retail discount to 100% for one year, expand it to the leisure and hospitality sectors and increase the rates discount for qualifying pubs to £5,000. Taken together with existing small business rate relief (which provides full relief for businesses using a single property with a rateable ...

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)

Employers have been rightly worried about the cost of funding SSP for employees that are self-isolating or suffering from the COVID-19 virus. Especially as SSP is now due on day one of absences. The Chancellor has now confirmed that he will create a means for employers to recover any SSP paid for the first 14 ...

Self-Employed Income Support Scheme

The long-awaited statement from the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak regarding COVID-19 support for the self-employed has been announced. The Chancellor said that the scheme will benefit some 95% of people whose main income source is derived from self-employment. A list of the scheme features as announced, and published, are as follows: Those that qualify will receive ...

COVID-19 BUSINESS SUPPORT UPDATE 2

Deferring your VAT liability payment Following the government’s announcement to defer the payment of VAT liabilities from 20 March to 30 June 2020, we have received a number of enquiries as to how this deferral works in practice. VAT payers on Direct Debits (DDs) must stop them in their Gateway login account or cancel their ...

Support with paying your taxes

Further support to businesses and the self-employed, to delay the payment of various taxes was announced last week. They include: VAT Any VAT that falls due for payment in the period from 20 March 2020 to 30 June 2020 can be deferred until the end of the 2020-21 tax year. This is not a cancellation ...

80 percent of your staff wages paid by government?

As one of the additional measures to support businesses affected by the Coronavirus outbreak, Rishi Sunak announced last week that HMRC is to step in and pay up to 80% of furloughed staff wages up to a monthly maximum of £2,500 per employee. Initially, this sounded as if HMRC was going to underwrite 80% of ...

COVID-19 BUSINESS SUPPORT UPDATE

On Friday, the Chancellor went significantly further than in the history of this great country, with a series of unprecedented announcements in the Government’s support of businesses, employees and individuals. The range of measures for UK businesses is significant and now includes the following: a Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme deferring VAT and Income Tax payments ...

The Latest Measures to Support Businesses

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, outlined a raft of further measures to support the UK’s ailing businesses, those affected by the forbidding COVID-19 outbreak. The list that follows summarises his announcements in the order they were announced:   The Treasury are making available £330bn of loan guarantees. These guarantees will underpin government backed bank loans on ...

Government support for small businesses if affected by the COVID-19 outbreak

There were a number of reliefs in the recent budget to support small business owners during the present Coronavirus outbreak. We have listed below some of the issues covered in a recent government news item. Statutory sick pay (SSP) The government will bring forward legislation to allow small- and medium-sized businesses and employers to reclaim ...

Government support for individuals if affected by the COVID-19 outbreak

The government has published a number of measures to support individuals during the current Coronavirus outbreak. We have summarised below some of the issues covered in a recent post-budget press release. Statutory Sick Pay Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) will now be available for eligible individuals diagnosed with COVID-19 or those who are unable to work ...

Spring Budget 11 March 2020

In the face of Brexit uncertainties and the recent Coronavirus outbreak the new Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, was faced with falling economic indicators, the need to boost NHS services and was consequently limited in his options to spend on plans to improve business confidence and fund infrastructure projects. Interestingly, there were a number of measures that ...

Self-employed v Employed

Many employed persons are drawn to the idea of running their own business. This short article sets out a few of the pros and cons of this change in status. The advantages: One of the major advantages of being self-employed is the opportunity to secure more than one income stream. When employed, we normally work ...

How will the Chancellor address Coronavirus issues?

Most pundits agree that the growing disruption posed by the Coronavirus outbreak combined with continuing Brexit uncertainty – exactly what will our trading relationship with the EU be from January 2021 – are likely to have a dampening effect on demand and supply; a combination that will lead to a slow-down in global economic activity. ...

Tax Diary March/April 2020

1 March 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 May 2019. 2 March 2020 – Self assessment tax for 2019/19 paid after this date will incur a 5% surcharge. 19 March 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 March 2020. (If you pay your tax ...

Additional rates reduction for pubs

Pubs will benefit from £1,000 business rates discount from April 2020. The cut is on top of previously announced plans to slash the bills of small shops by 50%. In a fresh demonstration of the government’s support for communities up and down the country, a new Pubs Relief will be introduced in April, with £1,000 ...

Changes to minimum wage rates

From April 2020, the National Living Wage (NLW) and National Minimum Wage (NMW) pay rates will increase as set out below. NLW rates for workers aged 25 and over – from £8.21 to £8.72 per hour. NMW rates: workers aged 21–24 — from £7.70 to £8.20 per hour workers aged 18–20 — from £6.15 to ...

Budget predictions 11 March 2020

What can we expect from the budget next week? On the expenditure side, infrastructure and the NHS seem to be the two major areas for investment. HS2 and other rail improvements in the North are likely to be beneficiaries as will carbon capture and other climate related projects, for example, improving the energy efficiency of ...

Last chance to consider tax planning options

In a month’s time, 5 April 2020, the 2019-20 tax year expires. After this date many of the options to utilise allowances and claim reliefs to reduce tax for 2019-20 will disappear. A number of the reliefs to consider are listed below. This is by no means an exhaustive list. Any numbers quoted refer to ...

Mis-selling of leasehold interests

The Competition and Marketing Authority has published information recently that points to evidence of potential mis-selling and unfair contract terms in the leasehold housing market. Their press release is reproduced below: As part of a probe into the industry, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is concerned that leasehold homeowners have been unfairly treated and ...

30 days or else

We have reported earlier this year that from 6 April 2020, residential property sales that are subject to capital gains tax will need to be reported to HMRC within 30 days of the sale. Any CGT due will also need to be paid in this 30 day period. Property sales affected will include: a property ...

Tax Diary February/March 2020

1 February 2020 – Due date for Corporation Tax payable for the year ended 30 April 2019. 19 February 2020 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 February 2020. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 February 2020) 19 February 2020 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly ...

Current Advisory Fuel Rates

To assist with your calculations, see previous article, we have reproduced below the current, HMRC Advisory Fuel Rates. They are: These rates apply from 1 December 2019. Engine size Petrol – amount per mile LPG – amount per mile 1400cc or less 12 pence 8 pence 1401cc to 2000cc 14 pence 9 pence Over 2000cc ...

Pay-back to save tax

At first sight, company car drivers whose private fuel costs are met by their employers may seem to be onto a good thing, but there is a nasty tax hit… Enter, the Car Fuel Benefit charge. Let’s say the following circumstances apply: list price of your car when new was £30,000 your employer pays for ...

Don\’t fall for this scam

The Insolvency Service has issued a warning that fraudsters have been contacting investors in insolvent schemes claiming to be from the Official Receiver’s office or to have been appointed by the Official Receiver to help recover funds for a fee. These approaches are always fraudulent. Official Receivers or any agent legitimately instructed to act on ...

Loans to directors and staff

If a company makes loans to its employees (including directors) there may be tax consequences. The same may also apply to loans extended to their family members. For example, the employer will have an obligation to report a beneficial loan to HMRC (and pay Class 1A NIC) and the deemed benefit would be a taxable ...

We are on your side

As we approach the end of yet another tax year it is worth reflecting on the role of HMRC in our tax affairs. Without a doubt, HMRC, tax legislation and its application, will continue to ensure that you pay your taxes. You can rely on HMRC to pounce if they feel that you have underpaid ...