News

The rules for MTD for Income Tax

28/05/2021

Making Tax Digital (MTD) will fundamentally change the way businesses, the self-employed and landlords interact with HMRC. The regime will require businesses and individuals to register, file, pay and update their information using an online tax account. The regime started in April 2019 for VAT purposes but only for VAT registered

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Potential tax demand scam

30/06/2022

The Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) is a well-known organisation that provides independent advice to the government on simplifying the UK tax system. The OTS has issued a press release to warn of a potential new tax scam that is using the OTS logo. The press release reads as follows: We have been made aware of people receiving

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Concerns about tax repayment agents

30/06/2022

HMRC has launched a new consultation seeking views on proposed measures to address consumer protection issues for people who claim tax refunds through repayment agents. The 12-week consultation period started on 22 June and will end on 14 September 2022. HMRC is looking to introduce new measures to stop rip-off agents taking advantage of

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Claiming Child Trust Fund cash

30/06/2022

HMRC has published their latest statistics on Child Trust Funds which reveal that whilst 320,000 accounts have now matured, 175,000 funds that have matured remain unclaimed. If you turned 18 on or after 1 September 2020 there may be cash waiting for you in a dormant Child Trust Fund (CTF). If your children recently turned 18 you should

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Corporation Tax - marginal relief from 1 April 2023

30/06/2022

The Corporation Tax main rate will increase to 25% from 1 April 2023 for companies with profits over £250,000. A Small Profits Rate (SPR) of 19% will also be introduced from the same date for companies with profits of up to £50,000 ensuring these companies pay Corporation Tax at the same rate as currently. Where a company has profits

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Taxpayers who return to the UK

30/06/2022

There are tax implications that you will need to consider if you previously left the UK to live abroad and are now either returning to live and work in the UK or are considering such a move. In most cases, if you have returned to live in the UK you will be classed as resident in the UK and will be required to pay UK tax on your UK income

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CGT during divorce or separation

30/06/2022

If you are part of a couple that is about to separate or divorce, apart from the emotional stress, there are also tax issues that can have significant implications. Whilst this is unlikely to be uppermost in your mind it is important that the tax consequences of the break-up are considered. Income Tax does not automatically cause an

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New deal for private renters

23/06/2022

The government has announced their intention to fundamentally reform the private rented sector marking the biggest shake up of the private rented sector in 30 years. These measures are set to include a ban on section 21 ‘no-fault’ evictions and placing a legislative duty for landlords in the private sector to meet the Decent Homes

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Reform of Consumer Credit Act

23/06/2022

The government has announced new plans to modernise consumer credit laws to cut costs for businesses and simplify rules for consumers. This will see major reforms to the Consumer Credit Act that regulates credit card purchases and personal loans. A consultation on the direction of reform is expected to be published by the end of the

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Class 1A payment deadline

23/06/2022

Class 1A NICs are paid by employers in respect of most benefits in kind provided to employees such as a company car. There is no employee contribution payable. If you provided taxable benefits to staff or directors your business is likely to have a Class 1A employers’ NIC liability. The deadline for paying class 1A NICs is 22 July 2022 if

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Check employment status for tax

23/06/2022

The Check Employment Status for Tax (CEST) tool can be used to help ascertain if a worker should be classified as employed or self-employed for tax purposes in both the private and public sector. The service provides HMRC’s view if IR35 legislation applies to a particular engagement and whether a worker should pay tax through PAYE. The

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Submitting CIS nil monthly returns

23/06/2022

The Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) is a set of special rules for tax and National Insurance for those working in the construction industry. Businesses in the construction industry are known as 'contractors' and 'subcontractors' and should be aware of the tax implications of the scheme. Under CIS, contractors are required to deduct

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Notifying cessation of self-employment

23/06/2022

Any taxpayers that have ceased to be self-employed must notify HMRC of their change in status. There are a number of steps that must be followed if a taxpayer ceases trading as a sole trader or if they are ending or leaving a business partnership. Taxpayers must send in a Self-Assessment return by the relevant deadline and will need to

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Tax Diary July/August 2022

20/06/2022

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 July 2022 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended

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What is tax avoidance?

16/06/2022

There is a distinction to be drawn between tax avoidance and tax evasion. Tax evasion is illegal and describes a situation where someone acts to deliberately evade tax. This could include deliberately submitting false tax returns, falsely claiming repayments or reliefs or hiding income, gains or wealth offshore. Tax avoidance on the

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Right to Buy home scheme extended

16/06/2022

The Right to Buy scheme has been available in various guises since it was first launched in the 1980s and following a relaunch in 2012. In essence the scheme gives qualifying social tenants the opportunity to buy their rented home at a discount. There is a maximum discount of 70% of the value of the property and a number of conditions

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New grant opportunities for farmers

16/06/2022

New grant opportunities to help farmers have been announced. The new grants will help farmers boost their businesses and add extra value to their produce. The Adding Value grant opened for applications on 9 June 2022 and will close at midnight on 21 July 2022. The funding will be offered in sums between £25,000 and £300,000. In total,

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Business Start Up Loans

16/06/2022

Financing a new Start Up business is one of the most crucial aspects of helping a new venture to succeed. Obtaining finance for a new business can be an arduous process. For example, borrowing money from a mainstream bank may not be an option or only possible with security conditions such as a personal guarantee. There is a government

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Tax and duties on goods sent from abroad

16/06/2022

There are special rules to ensure that goods sent from abroad are taxed appropriately and thus not disadvantage UK businesses supplying goods in the UK, for example, by having to compete with VAT free imports. This includes goods that are new or used and bought online, bought abroad and shipped to the UK and goods received as gifts. This

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Changes in State Pension age

16/06/2022

The State Pension age is currently 66 and two further increases are set out in legislation: a gradual rise to 67 for those born on or after April 1960; and a gradual rise to 68 between 2044 and 2046 for those born on or after April 1977. In March 2016, John Cridland CBE, the former Director General of the Confederation of British

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Till fraud targeted by HMRC

09/06/2022

In the Autumn Budget 2018, the government announced that they would launch a call for evidence to learn more about the nature and scale of till fraud. This specifically looked at businesses that deliberately undertake electronic sales suppression (ESS). ESS occurs when a business deliberately manipulates its electronic sales records in

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Stamp duty refunds scam

09/06/2022

Over the past few years, there have been some interesting opportunities for making claims for Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) refund claims. It should be noted that to be successful, these claims must meet quite specific criteria. For example, there may be scope for landlords and property investors to recover the 3% SDLT surcharge on the basis

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Claiming for mobile phones

09/06/2022

When an employer incurs costs for the provision of mobile phones to employees it is important to understand the correct tax treatment of these expenses. This includes costs for phones provided to employees and reimbursement of employee’s own phone costs. As a general rule, the provision of one mobile phone to a director or employee for

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Customs declaration service update

09/06/2022

The Customs Declaration Service (CDS) is a new custom's IT platform that has been designed to modernise the process for completing customs declarations for businesses that import or export goods from the UK. A phased launch of the service started in August 2018. The CDS is used for making import and export declarations when moving goods

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Director banned for Bounce Back Loan abuse

09/06/2022

The Bounce Back Loans scheme was launched in May 2020 to provide financial support to businesses across the UK that were losing revenue and cashflow as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The scheme allowed qualifying small businesses to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000 with no fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months. In most

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UKs audit regime to be revamped

09/06/2022

The government has announced plans to revamp the UK’s corporate reporting and audit regime. The main changes were summarised as follows in a joint press release published by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, and the Minister for Corporate

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Sign in to Childcare Account

01/06/2022

HMRC’s Childcare account can be used to claim 30 hours free childcare or to pay for your Tax-Free Childcare. HMRC’s sign in page for the account states that in order ‘…to keep getting your 30 hours free childcare or Tax-Free Childcare, you must sign in every 3 months and confirm your details are up to date’. There are various eligibility

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Deadlines for making voluntary NIC top-ups

01/06/2022

In certain circumstances it can be beneficial to make voluntary National Insurance Contributions (NICs) to increase entitlement to future benefits, including the State or New State Pension for self-employed persons. You might want to consider making voluntary NICs if: You are close to State Pension age and do not have enough

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Arranging to pay tax bill by instalments

01/06/2022

Businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, may be eligible to receive support with their tax affairs by applying to HMRC’s Time To Pay service. These arrangements are agreed on a case-by-case basis and are tailored to individual circumstances and liabilities. Agreements reached with

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Last year to claim super-deduction

01/06/2022

A reminder that the super-deduction, offering 130% first-year tax relief, is available to companies until March 2023. The super-deduction is designed to help companies finance expansion in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and to drive growth. The super-deduction tax break was introduced on 1 April 2021 and allows businesses to deduct

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Business Asset Disposal Relief – deadlines and claims

01/06/2022

Business Asset Disposal Relief (BADR) applies to the sale of a business, shares in a trading company or an individual’s interest in a trading partnership. Where this relief is available CGT of 10% is payable in place of the standard rate. There are a number of qualifying conditions that must be met in order to qualify for the

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Accounting periods for Corporation Tax

01/06/2022

Companies often have to contend with having two different company accounting periods. This is because there are different rules for Companies House filings and for HMRC to whom any Corporation Tax due is paid. The accounting periods can be the same but can also differ and a change may be needed to ‘sync’ the accounting periods. As a

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HMRC advice to counter spoof emails or texts

26/05/2022

HMRC continues to warn of the ever-present problem of fraudulent phishing emails, suspicious phone calls and texts. These unwanted emails, phone calls and texts are being sent from all around the world and the fraudsters are continuing to find new ways to target unsuspecting taxpayers. These messages typically look to obtain taxpayers

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Completing P11D forms to report benefits in kind

26/05/2022

The deadline for submitting the 2021-22 forms P11D, P11D(b) and P9D is 6 July 2022. The forms can be submitted using commercial software or via HMRC’s PAYE online service. Employees must also be provided with a copy of the information relating to them on these forms by the same date. P11D forms are used to provide information to HMRC on

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VAT Flat Rate Scheme – are you a limited cost trader?

26/05/2022

The VAT Flat Rate Scheme has been designed to simplify the way a business accounts for VAT and in so doing reduce the administration costs of complying with the VAT legislation. The scheme is open to businesses that expect their annual taxable turnover in the next 12 months to be no more than £150,000. A limited cost trader check was

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HMRC wins disguised remuneration case

26/05/2022

HMRC has welcomed a recent Court of Appeal decision concerning a disguised remuneration case. These types of schemes provide employees with the bulk of their earnings in the form of loans that are used to try and avoid paying Income Tax and National Insurance contributions (NICs). In the case in question, an IT contractor used a

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Agent authorisation re SEISS grants

26/05/2022

Self-employed individuals (including partnerships) who have overclaimed the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) must pay back the overpayment to HMRC. The rules for repayment state that you must tell HMRC if you were not eligible to have claimed the grant. There can also be penalties for not informing HMRC. However, there are

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Domicile and IHT

26/05/2022

Domicile is a general legal concept which in basic terms is taken to mean the country where you permanently belong. But actually, determining domicile status can be complex. HMRC guidance states that domicile cannot be defined precisely, but the concept rests on various basic principles. Although domicile can change, there is generally a

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New measures to help with the cost-of-living crisis

26/05/2022

As expected, the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak has announced a new package of support measures in a statement to the House of Commons on 26 May 2022. The measures will be targeted to the most vulnerable members of society in a total package of measures that we are told will cost £15bn and bring the total cost of living support to £37 billion

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UK Infrastructure Bank set-up

19/05/2022

The UK Infrastructure Bank Bill, announced as part of the measures in the Queen’s speech, represents the final step in setting up the UK Infrastructure Bank as an operationally independent institution. The new Bank officially opened for business in June 2021 but the Bill will remove legal obstacles so the Bank can lend directly to local

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Free company information

19/05/2022

There is a significant amount of information about companies that can be obtained from Companies House. Companies House is responsible for incorporating and dissolving limited companies, examining and storing company information and making company information available to the public. Much of this information is available at no cost. This

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VAT – discounts and free gifts

19/05/2022

When you issue an invoice to your customer, you must ensure that you charge the correct rate of VAT. Whilst most businesses in the UK charge VAT at the standard rate of 20% there are a number of different VAT rates and exemptions that you should be aware of. In the UK, there are three separate VAT rates, the standard rate @ 20%, the

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Intrastat – trading goods with EU

19/05/2022

Intrastat declarations were historically used to collect information on the movement of goods from the UK to other EU countries and vice versa. Any business that exceeded the exemption threshold for either arrivals or dispatches of goods were obliged to submit monthly returns. This changed following Brexit and there were further changes

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Corporation Tax – reminder HMRC contact details

19/05/2022

HMRC can be called by phone on 0300 200 3410 for help with general Corporation Tax enquiries. You will need your 10-digit Unique Tax Reference (UTR) when calling HMRC and this reference number cannot be provided over the phone. The UTR is the primary identifier for a company and should be used whenever HMRC is contacted. The number can

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Tax Diary June/July 2022

19/05/2022

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 return for the month ended 5 June 2022. 19 June 2022 - CIS

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Access to cash protection increased

18/05/2022

The new Financial Services and Markets Bill, announced as part of the Queen's speech, will provide increased protections for those still dealing with cash. Access to cash remains vital for many people across the UK, including the more vulnerable in society. The government has committed to preserving the use of cash as an option even as

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Reminder to look out for tax credit renewal packs

12/05/2022

HMRC is currently sending the annual tax credit renewal packs to some 2.1 million tax credit claimants and is encouraging recipients to renew their tax credits claim online. HMRC started writing to taxpayers at the end of April and expects all packs to be with recipients by 27 May 2022. A renewal is required if the pack has a red line

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Holiday lets occupancy check

12/05/2022

The furnished holiday let (FHL) rules allow holiday lettings of properties that meet certain conditions to be treated as a trade for tax purposes. In order to qualify as a furnished holiday letting, the following criteria need to be met: The property must be let on a commercial basis with a view to the realisation of profits. Second

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When you are required to register for PAYE

12/05/2022

There are a multitude of rules that new businesses must follow when they start employing staff for the first time. These include ensuring registering for PAYE as an employer with HMRC. This must be done before the first payday and this process must even be completed by directors of a limited company who are employed by the company. There

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ISAs 2022-23

12/05/2022

The maximum amount that can be invested in an ISA in the current (2022-23) tax year is £20,000. ISA’s are a valuable and flexible relief and should be considered as an option for most investors. An ISA is a tax-exempt savings account available to UK residents. Whilst the amount invested in an ISA does not benefit from tax relief the

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