News

The latest breaking news in the industry!

11-07-2024

Labour win landslide election result

As had been widely predicted, the results at the polls have seen the Labour Party back in power after 14 years in opposition. Labour have swept into power with their second-largest majority whilst the Conservative Party have had their worst ever result in terms of the number of seats won. We should expect Labour to fulfil their election pledges and make their reported tax changes that were ... read more

11-07-2024

Inheritance and tax

As a general rule, an individual who inherits property, money or shares is not liable to pay tax on the inheritance. This is because any Inheritance Tax (IHT) due should be paid out of the deceased’s estate before any cash or assets are distributed to the heirs. However, the recipient is liable to income tax on any profit earned after the inheritance, such as dividends from shares and to capital ... read more

11-07-2024

Company filing obligations

It is important that anyone responsible for the accounts and tax filing regime for private limited companies is aware of their obligations. After the end of its financial year, a private limited company must prepare full annual accounts and a company tax return. The deadline for filing the first set of accounts with Companies House is 21 months after the date the company was registered with ... read more

11-07-2024

Restarting a dormant company

HMRC must be informed when a non-trading or dormant company restarts trading and becomes active for Corporation Tax purposes. Companies can use HMRC Online Services to supply the relevant information. When a company has previously traded and then stops it would normally be considered as dormant. A company can stay dormant indefinitely, however, there are costs associated with doing this and ... read more

11-07-2024

Business VAT responsibilities

The taxable turnover threshold that determines whether businesses should be registered for VAT is currently £90,000. Businesses with turnover below this level can also apply for a voluntary VAT registration. Businesses charge VAT on their sales. This is known as output VAT and the sales are referred to as outputs. Similarly, VAT will be payable on most goods and services purchased by the ... read more

11-07-2024

Are mega sized marshmallows zero-rated?

In the UK most basic food stuffs are zero rated. However, the definition of 'basic' is not straightforward and many of the foods are zero rated as a result of historical legislation dating back to the introduction of VAT in 1973. Famously, cakes are zero rated but not all biscuits are zero rated. However, biscuits wholly or partially covered in chocolate are standard rated. This topic was the ... read more

08-07-2024

New government

Our new government, and in particular, Rachel Reeves, the new Chancellor, will be responsible for raising the funds that our new government requires to finance its activities. The government has already declared that it will not increase Income Tax, National Insurance or VAT and government borrowing has to remain within tight limits. In which case, the only source of new money has to come from ... read more

08-07-2024

Exit plans

Exit can be seen as quitting, especially if the exit discussed is your business interests. But actually, business exit planning is an essential part of general business planning. In some respects, it is the most important aspect of business development planning as it shines a light on the timing and value you can expect when you retire. Without a formal exit strategy, you may rush into a sale or ... read more

04-07-2024

CGT Incorporation Relief

Where a taxpayer owns a business as a sole trader or in partnership, a capital gain will be deemed to arise if the business is converted into a company by reference to the market value of the business assets including goodwill. This could give rise to a chargeable gain based on the difference between the market value of the assets and their original cost. However, in most cases the incorporation ... read more

04-07-2024

What your tax code means

The letters in your tax code signify your entitlement (or not) to the annual tax free personal allowance. The tax codes are updated annually and help employers work out how much tax to deduct from an employee’s pay packet. The basic personal allowance for the current (and next) tax year is £12,570. The corresponding tax code for an employee entitled to the standard tax-free Personal Allowance ... read more

04-07-2024

Income Tax in Scotland

The Scottish rate of income tax (SRIT) is payable on the non-savings and non-dividend income of those defined as Scottish taxpayers. The definition of a Scottish taxpayer is based on whether the taxpayer has a 'close connection' with Scotland or elsewhere in the UK. The liability to SRIT is not based on nationalist identity, location of work or the source of a person’s income e.g., receiving a ... read more

04-07-2024

Late night taxi for an employee

There is no specific requirement for employers to provide employees with transport home. Nevertheless, an employer has a duty of care to their employees, which means that they should take all steps which are reasonably possible to ensure their health, safety and wellbeing. Ensuring that an employee gets safely home during unsocial working hours could fall within the employer's 'duty of care'. ... read more

04-07-2024

Claim full expensing or 50% FYA

Full expensing allows for a 100% first-year capital allowance for qualifying plant and machinery assets and came into effect last April. To qualify for full expensing, expenditure must be incurred on the provision of “main rate” plant or machinery. Full expensing is only available to companies subject to Corporation Tax. Plant and machinery that may qualify for full expensing ... read more

04-07-2024

Statutory redundancy pay

If you have been in the same job for two years or more and are made redundant you will usually be entitled to redundancy money. The legal minimum that you are entitled to receive is known as ‘statutory redundancy pay’. There are exceptions where you are not entitled to statutory redundancy pay, for example, if your employer offers to keep you on or offers you suitable alternative work which you ... read more

01-07-2024

Translation

If you receive documents from overseas customers or suppliers and you need to translate text into English, have you used Google Translate? It’s a free, but incredibly powerful facility. You can select to translate: Individual blocks of text that you add to view in alternate languages. Images with text. Documents. And really useful, websites. Use this to view overseas sites in English or an ... read more

01-07-2024

Extracting profits from a small, limited company

It is pretty much universally accepted that shareholders (usually directors) of small companies take out their remuneration as a small salary - a salary pitched high enough to secure NIC benefits but not high enough to that employee NIC contributions are payable - and any balance as dividends. Unless directors have the need for remuneration in excess of the current basic rate Income Tax band (set ... read more

01-07-2024

Tax Diary August/September 2024

1 August 2024 - Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 31 October 2023. 19 August 2024 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 August 2024. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 August 2024) 19 August 2024 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 August 2024. 19 August 2024 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 August 2024 ... read more

27-06-2024

Are you claiming the marriage allowance

The marriage allowance can be claimed by married couples and those in a civil partnership and where a spouse or civil partner does not pay tax or does not pay tax above the basic rate threshold for Income Tax (i.e., one of the couples must currently earn less than the £12,570 personal allowance for 2024-25). The allowance works by permitting the lower earning partner to transfer up to £1,260 of ... read more

27-06-2024

Check your State Pension forecast

The enhanced Check Your State Pension forecast service is now available online. The service can be found on GOV.UK at the following webpage https://www.gov.uk/check-state-pension. The new digital service is a joint service by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). It has been enhanced to include a fully end-to-end digital solution. The service allows most ... read more

27-06-2024

Finding your National Insurance number

If you have lost or forgotten your National Insurance number there are a number of ways to locate it. Firstly, you could try and locate the number on paperwork such as your tax return, payslip or P60. You can also use your personal tax account or the HMRC App to find your National Insurance number. If your National Insurance number still cannot be found a request can be submitted in writing to ... read more

27-06-2024

Check employment status for tax

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 sectors. The service provides HMRC’s view as to whether IR35 legislation applies to a particular engagement and whether a worker should pay tax through PAYE. Additionally, the service will help to determine if ... read more

27-06-2024

How to check a UK VAT number

The online service for checking a UK VAT number is available at: www.gov.uk/check-uk-vat-number. This service can be used to check: if a UK VAT registration number is valid; and the name and address of the business the number is registered to. The service also allows UK taxpayers to obtain a certificate to prove that they checked that a VAT registration number was valid at a given time and ... read more

27-06-2024

Private rental deposits

There are special rules under the Tenancy Deposit Scheme that limits the amount of deposit that landlords in England can request. There are also further limitations on what landlords and agents can charge tenants. If you are renting a residential property you may have to pay a deposit before you move in. The maximum deposit your landlord can ask for is: up to 5 weeks’ rent if the rent for the ... read more

25-06-2024

What is a group company structure?

A group is formed when one company has control of, owns, a number of subsidiary companies. A group is different to an arrangement where an individual owns a number of companies personally. In this case the companies would be called associated or sister companies. What are the advantages of a group structure? One useful reason for setting up new ventures as a separate subsidiary is the ... read more

20-06-2024

Reclaiming pre-trading VAT

There are special rules that determine the recoverability of VAT incurred before a business registered for VAT. This type of VAT is known as pre-registration input VAT. There are different rules for the supply of goods and services, but VAT can only be reclaimed if the pre-registration expenses relate to the supply of taxable goods or services by the newly VAT registered business. The time limit ... read more

20-06-2024

Post cessation transactions

Tax relief may be available for post-cessation expenses of a trade. To be an allowable post-cessation expense the trade must have ceased and the expense must have been deductible in calculating the trading profits. This means that the expense still has to meet the wholly and exclusively test and be revenue, not capital, expenditure. The expenditure can be apportioned if necessary. The way in ... read more

20-06-2024

Tax relief for training costs

If you are self-employed it is important to know if an expense is tax allowable. Any allowable costs can be used to reduce your taxable profit. As a general rule you can claim for items that you would normally use for less than 2 years as allowable expenses such as stationery and other office sundries as well as rent, rates, power and insurance costs. HMRC lists the following office expenses as ... read more

20-06-2024

Tax and employee share schemes

There are a number of government approved share schemes which offer various incentives to employees. The rules of the schemes vary but they are all designed to help incentivise employees by giving them the opportunity to invest in their employer's business. This in turn helps businesses retain and recruit key staff by offering tax efficient benefits. They can be tax advantaged or non-tax ... read more

20-06-2024

Connected persons for tax purposes

The definition of a connected person for tax purposes varies. A statutory definition of “connected persons” for Capital Gains Tax purposes is set out in Section 286 of the Taxation of Chargeable Gains Act (TCGA) 1992. The legislation states: " A person is connected with an individual if that person is the individual’s spouse or civil partner, or is a relative, or the spouse or ... read more

20-06-2024

Is your income over £100,000?

If you earn over £100,000 in any tax year your personal allowance is gradually reduced by £1 for every £2 of adjusted net income over £100,000 irrespective of age. This means that any taxable receipt that takes your income over £100,000 will result in a reduction in personal tax allowances that would reduce the allowance to zero if your adjusted net income is £125,140 or above. Your adjusted net ... read more

17-06-2024

Child Benefit for 16 – 19 year olds

More than a million parents will receive reminders to extend Child Benefit for their teenagers if they are continuing their education or training after their GCSEs. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is sending more than 1.4 million Child Benefit reconfirmation letters to parents between 24 May and 17 July. The letters will include a QR code which, when scanned, directs them straight to GOV.UK to ... read more

17-06-2024

Are we unpaid tax collectors?

Business owners often refer to VAT as if it were a cost to their business regardless of their VAT position; whether they are registered for VAT or not. If you are not registered for VAT, you do not have to add VAT to your sales and you cannot recover any VAT you pay on purchases. In which case, under these circumstances, VAT is a cost. If you are registered for VAT, cash you collect from your ... read more

13-06-2024

Types of HMRC enquiries

HMRC can enquire into any statutory return (or amendment of that return) or statutory claim to check if the return / claim has been prepared correctly or if further information is required. HMRC’s internal manuals state that there is no statutory definition of an enquiry, so it carries its normal dictionary meaning of `seeking information, asking, questioning’. In practice the nature and extent ... read more

13-06-2024

Correcting errors in VAT returns

Where an error on a past VAT return is uncovered businesses have a duty to correct the error as soon as possible. As a general rule, any necessary adjustment can be made on a current VAT return. To do this, the errors must be below the reporting threshold. Under the reporting threshold rule, businesses can make an adjustment on their next VAT return if the net value of the errors is £10,000 or ... read more

13-06-2024

Interest on children’s savings

All children in the UK have their own personal allowance, currently £12,570. There are special rules if a parent gifts significant amounts of money to their children which results in them receiving bank interest of more than £100 (before tax) annually. If this is the case, the parent is liable to pay tax on all the interest if it is above their own Personal Savings Allowance (PSA). These ... read more

13-06-2024

Non-resident UK property sales

There are specials rules that apply to UK property sales by non-residents. Since 6 April 2020 non-residents have needed to report and pay any non-resident Capital Gains Tax (CGT) due if they have sold or disposed of: residential UK property or land (land for these purposes also includes any buildings on the land); non-residential UK property or land; mixed use UK property or land; or rights ... read more

13-06-2024

Self-assessment payments on account

Self-assessment taxpayers are usually required to pay their income tax liabilities in three instalments each year. The first two payments on account are due on 31 January during the tax year and 31 July following the tax year end date. These payments on account are based on 50% each of the previous year’s net income tax liability. In addition, the third (or only) payment of tax will be due on 31 ... read more

13-06-2024

Multiple Dwellings Relief for SDLT

It was announced as part of the Spring Budget 2023 that Multiple Dwellings Relief (MDR) was being abolished. This change has now come into effect for transactions which complete, or substantially perform on or after 1 June 2024. The MDR relief applied to property purchasers who bought more than one dwelling where a transaction or a number of linked transactions included freehold or leasehold ... read more

11-06-2024

New Brooms

As time passes during the present election campaign, its seems more likely that we may have a change of government from the 5 July. Labour have disclosed a number of tax changes they would introduce. To summarise they are: Private school fees will attract VAT at 20% which private schools will no doubt pass on to parents. The Labour Party has also said it will also end business rates relief for ... read more

11-06-2024

Falling inflation – what does it mean for you?

The following notes are reproduced from a Treasury statement issued 21 May 2024. Lower inflation supports people by maintaining the purchasing power of their money. If prices only rise slowly, people can plan their budgets more effectively - encouraging spending and investment, which fuels the economy. Lower inflation also helps businesses grow by providing a stable, predictable environment for ... read more

07-06-2024

Tax Diary July/August 2024

1 July 2024 - Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 30 September 2023. 6 July 2024 - Complete and submit forms P11D return of benefits and expenses and P11D(b) return of Class 1A NICs. 19 July 2024 - Pay Class 1A NICs (by the 22 July 2024 if paid electronically). 19 July 2024 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 July 2024. (If you pay your tax electronically the due ... read more

06-06-2024

Filing your tax return early

The 2023-24 tax year ended on 5 April 2024 and the new 2024-25 tax year started on 6 April 2024. Most taxpayers will be happy to leave dealing with their 2023-24 tax returns until later this year or even until January 2025. The 31 January 2025 is not just the final date for submission of the 2023-24 self-assessment tax return but also an important date for payment of tax due. This is the final ... read more

06-06-2024

Setting up as a sole trader

Setting up in business as a sole trader is arguably the simplest way of starting and running a business. The advantages of being a sole trader include independence, ease of set up and running your business, and the fact that all the profits go to you. The disadvantages include a lack of support, unlimited liability, the prospect of paying more tax on high profits and that you are personally ... read more

06-06-2024

Need to register for self-assessment?

There is an online tool, developed by HMRC, that allows taxpayers to check if they need to notify HMRC about additional income. The online tool can be found at www.gov.uk/check-additional-income-tax. You are required to submit a self-assessment return if any of the following apply: you were self-employed as a ‘sole trader’ and earned more than £1,000 (before taking off anything you can claim ... read more

06-06-2024

Statutory Pay assistance

An employer can usually reclaim 92% of employees’ Statutory Maternity, Statutory Paternity, Statutory Adoption, Statutory Parental Bereavement and Statutory Shared Parental Pay. If the business qualifies for Small Employers’ relief, this figure can increase to 103%. Small Employers’ relief is available if the business paid £45,000 or less in Class 1 National Insurance (ignoring any reductions ... read more

06-06-2024

Directors and National Insurance

Directors are classed as employees and pay National Insurance on annual income from salary and bonuses that exceed the Primary Threshold. The annual threshold is £12,570 in the current 2024-25 tax year. Many director shareholders take a minimum salary and any balance of remuneration as dividends. This tends to reduce National Insurance Contributions (NICs), and in some case income tax. The ... read more

06-06-2024

Transferring unused IHT residence nil rate band

The Inheritance Tax residence nil rate band (RNRB) is a transferable allowance for married couples and civil partners (per person) when their main residence is passed down to a direct descendent such as children or grandchildren after their death. The allowance increased to the present maximum level of £175,000 from 6 April 2020. The allowance is available to the deceased person’s children or ... read more

04-06-2024

Change

There is a French saying “Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose” meaning, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Its interesting to apply this to a change that is about to come about, if, as expected, the Labour Party form the next government from the 5th of July. The present Shadow Chancellor, Rachael Reeves, has indicated that there will be no immediate ... read more

04-06-2024

New protection for consumers

The Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Act has become law after receiving Royal Assent. The Act paves the way to give consumers rights across the UK, with greater control and clarity over online purchases. It does this by requiring businesses to provide clearer information to consumers before they enter a subscription contract, remind consumers that their free trial or low-cost trial is ... read more

30-05-2024

General election date announced

The Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, declared from the steps of Downing Street (on 22 May 2024) that the next general election will take place on 4 July 2024. The Prime Minister confirmed that he had spoken with His Majesty the King to request the dissolution of parliament. The King granted this request, thereby confirming that the general election will take place on the 4 July 2024. This will be ... read more

30-05-2024

Do not respond if you receive this letter

Companies House published guidance titled ‘Reporting scams pretending to be from Companies House’ has been updated. The list is intended to help people check if contacts purporting to be from Companies House are actually a scam. The guidance contains a list of emails, letters and phone calls that are fraudulent. The guidance can be useful to help decide if a contact is genuine or from a fraudster ... read more

30-05-2024

Changes to the High Income Child Benefit Charge

The changes to the High Income Child Benefit Charge (HICBC) announced as part of the Spring Budget came into effect on 6 April 2024. The income threshold at which HICBC starts to be charged has been increased from £50,000 to £60,000. The HICBC is charged at the rate of 1% of the full Child Benefit award for each £200 (2023-24: £100) of income of the highest wage earner between £60,000 and ... read more

30-05-2024

Payback company car private fuel

Where an employee with a company car is provided with fuel for their own private use by their employers, the default position is that the employee is required to pay the car fuel benefit charge. The charge is determined by reference to the CO2 rating of the car, applied to the car fuel benefit multiplier, currently £27,800. The car fuel benefit charge is not applicable if the employee pays back ... read more

30-05-2024

CGT Rollover Relief

Business Asset Rollover Relief also known as CGT Rollover Relief allows for deferral of Capital Gains Tax (CGT) on gains made when taxpayers sell or dispose of certain assets and use all or part of the proceeds to buy new business assets. The relief means that the tax on the gain of the old asset is postponed. The amount of the gain is effectively rolled over into the cost of the new asset and any ... read more

30-05-2024

Carry back charitable donations

If you are a higher rate or additional rate taxpayer you have the option to carry back your charitable donations to the previous tax year. A request to carry back the donation must be made before or at the same time as your previous year’s self-assessment return is filed. This means that if you made a gift to charity in the current 2024-25 tax year that ends on 5 April 2025, you can accelerate ... read more

30-05-2024

Employee suggestion schemes

There are many advantages to creating an employee suggestion scheme where employees are rewarded for making suggestions that benefit your business. Apart from the value that these suggestions can have in saving money or driving new business ideas there are also tax-free benefits associated with running these schemes. HMRC list two kinds of award that can be given to employees: Encouragement ... read more

28-05-2024

Post Office convictions quashed

Convictions of hundreds of postmasters have been quashed following Royal Assent of the Post Office (Horizon System) Offences Act 2024. Many postmasters endured financial ruin, the loss of homes, livelihoods, reputation and some even lost their lives as a result of the Horizon IT Scandal which is one of the greatest miscarriages of justice in our history. Following Royal Assent on 24 May, all ... read more

28-05-2024

Benefits of a fall in inflation

An economist from the Treasury explains exactly what a fall in inflation means for you. How will lower inflation help the economy? Lower inflation supports people by maintaining the purchasing power of their money. If prices only rise slowly, people can plan their budgets more effectively - encouraging spending and investment, which fuels the economy. Lower inflation also helps ... read more

23-05-2024

Changes to Companies House Fees

There have been a number of significant changes in Companies House fees. These changes took effect on 1 May 2024. The last significant change in fees occurred in April 2016. The new fees have been calculated on a ‘cost recovery’ basis meaning that the fees are calculated based on what it costs to provide the services in question. Companies House state that they do not make a profit on their ... read more

23-05-2024

Tax credits reminder

We would like to remind our readers that HMRC is currently sending the annual tax credit renewal packs to 730,000 tax credit claimants. HMRC is encouraging recipients to renew their tax credits claim online. HMRC started writing to taxpayers on 2 May 2024 and expects all packs to be with recipients by the 19 June 2024. Renewal packs with a black stripe across the front page are automatically ... read more

23-05-2024

Reporting expenses and benefits to HMRC

The deadline for submitting the 2023-24 forms P11D, P11D(b) and P9D is 6 July 2024. These forms can be submitted using commercial software or via HMRC’s PAYE online service. HMRC no longer accepts paper P11D and P11D(b) forms. 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 all ... read more

23-05-2024

VAT reverse charge for builders

There are special VAT reverse charge rules for certain building contractors and sub-contractors. The rules, which came into effect on 1 March 2021, makes the supply of most construction services between construction or building businesses subject to the domestic reverse charge. The reverse charge only applies to supplies of specified construction services to other businesses in the construction ... read more

23-05-2024

Tax when transferring assets during divorce

When a couple is separating or is divorced it is unlikely that they are thinking about the tax implications of their actions. However, apart from the emotional stress, there are also tax issues that can have significant implications. The Capital Gains Tax (CGT) rules that apply during separation and divorce changed for disposals that occur on or after 6 April 2023. These changes extended the ... read more

23-05-2024

View your annual tax summary

The Annual Tax Summary is a document provided by HMRC that shows details of the tax you pay and how this is used by government. The Annual Tax Summary shows: your taxable income from all sources that HMRC knew about at the time that it was prepared; the rates used to calculate your Income Tax and National Insurance contributions; and a breakdown of how the UK government spends your taxes - ... read more

20-05-2024

Universal Credit changes

Universal Credit claimants working less than half of a full-time week will have to look to increase their hours but will be able to benefit from extra work coach support. These changes will see 400,000 Universal Credit claimants receive more help to progress in work. The changes come as the PM announces once in a generation welfare reforms to help people find work, boost their earnings, and grow ... read more

20-05-2024

Childcare funding for under 9-month-olds

In a recent press release the Department for Education confirmed that parents of children from 9 months old can now apply to access government-funded childcare from September 2024, as England’s largest ever childcare expansion continues. From 12 May 2024, eligible working parents of children who will be 9 months old by 31 August can apply to access 15 hours of funded childcare a week - set to ... read more

16-05-2024

Employing staff for the first time?

There are a number of rules and regulations that you must be aware of when you employ staff for the first time. HMRC’s guidance sets out some important issues to be aware of when becoming an employer. Decide how much to pay someone - you must pay your employee at least the National Minimum Wage. Check if someone has the legal right to work in the UK. You may have to do other employment checks ... read more

16-05-2024

Register an overseas company

An overseas company must register with Companies House if they want to set up a place of business in the UK. This would mean that the overseas company has a physical presence in the UK through which it carries on business. If an overseas company does not have a physical presence in the UK, they are not usually required to register with Companies House. For example, an independent agent who ... read more

16-05-2024

Beneficial tax-exempt loans

An employee can obtain a benefit when provided with an employment-related cheap or interest-free loan. The benefit is the difference between the interest the employee pays, if any, and the commercial rate the employee would have to pay on a loan obtained elsewhere. These types of loans are referred to as beneficial loans. There are a number of scenarios where beneficial loans are exempt, and ... read more

16-05-2024

Closing a limited company

There are a number of reasons why you may need to close your limited company. This could be because the company structure no longer suits your needs, your business is no longer active, or the company is insolvent. You will usually need the agreement of all the company’s directors and shareholders to close down a company. The method for closing down a limited company depends on whether it is ... read more

16-05-2024

Check a VAT number

The Check a UK VAT number service is available at: www.gov.uk/check-uk-vat-number. This service allows users to check: if a UK VAT registration number is valid; and the name and address of the registered business. The service also allows UK taxpayers to obtain a certificate to prove that they checked that a VAT registration number was valid at a given time and date. This is especially ... read more

16-05-2024

Deferring National Insurance payments

Employees with more than one job may be able to defer or delay paying Class 1 National Insurance in certain circumstances. This deferment can be considered when any of the following apply: You pay Class 1 National Insurance with more than one employer. You earn £967 or more per week from one job over the tax year. You earn £1,209 or more per week from 2 jobs over the tax year. This ... read more

13-05-2024

Customs declaration deadline

A reminder that businesses must submit all export declarations through the Customs Declaration Service (CDS) by 4 June. Businesses exporting goods have less than one month left to move across to the CDS, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) announced today. Export declarations must be submitted through CDS from 4 June this year, when it replaces the Customs Handling Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) ... read more

13-05-2024

Company names – new regulations

A recent post by Companies House confirmed that they are now using new powers to challenge the registration of certain company names. Extracts from their recent blog post is reproduced below: “New powers to challenge company names These new measures build on existing controls on company names. Names cannot be the same as or too similar to an existing name, and certain terms are ... read more

09-05-2024

Time to renew tax credits

HMRC is currently sending the annual tax credit renewal packs to the 730,000 tax credit claimants and is encouraging recipients to renew their tax credits claim online. HMRC started writing to taxpayers on 2 May and expects all packs to be with recipients by the 19 June 2024. Renewal packs with a black stripe across the front page are automatically renewed. However, taxpayers must inform HMRC of ... read more

09-05-2024

Act now to claim dormant funds

The Ministry of Justice has published an urgent warning for anyone with unclaimed dormant funds held by the Courts Funds Office (CFO). Recent changes in legislation have changed the rules for individuals or entities with dormant funds held by the CFO. The new rules come into effect from 1 June 2024 and mean that any account that has been held dormant within the CFO for 30 years or more will be ... read more

09-05-2024

Check if HMRC contact is genuine

HMRC’s published guidance titled ‘Check genuine HMRC contact that uses more than one communication method’ has been updated. The list is intended to help taxpayers check if recent contacts purporting to be from HMRC are actually a scam. The guidance contains a list of emails, phone calls, letters and text messages recently issued by HMRC that are genuine. The list can be useful to help taxpayers ... read more

09-05-2024

How to claim R&D expenditure credit

In the Autumn Statement last year, it was announced that the existing R&D Expenditure Credit and Small and Medium Enterprise Scheme would be merged from April 2024. The merged scheme R&D expenditure credit (RDEC) and enhanced R&D intensive support (ERIS) became effective for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 April 2024. The expenditure rules for both are the same, but the ... read more

09-05-2024

Do you need to register for Economic Crime Levy?

The Economic Crime Levy is a levy that applies to businesses that are already regulated for anti-money laundering purposes. Your business must register if your UK revenue is £10.2 million or more in a financial year and: Your business is already regulated by HMRC for anti-money laundering purposes. Your business is regulated by a professional body for anti-money laundering purposes. The ... read more

09-05-2024

Lifetime transfers and liability to IHT

There are special rules concerning the liability to IHT of a transfer made during a lifetime. For example, most gifts made during a person's life are not subject to tax at the time of the gift. These lifetime transfers are known as 'potentially exempt transfers' or 'PETs'. These gifts or transfers achieve their potential of becoming exempt from IHT if the taxpayer survives for more than seven ... read more

07-05-2024

Tax Diary June/July 2024

1 June 2024 - Due date for corporation tax due for the year ended 31 August 2023. 19 June 2024 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 June 2024. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 June 2024). 19 June 2024 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 June 2024. 19 June 2024 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 June 2024 is payable by ... read more

07-05-2024

Cyber protection laws introduced

New consumer protections against hacking and cyber-attacks came into force at the end of April 2024. All internet connected smart devices will be required by law to meet minimum-security standards. Manufacturers will be legally required to protect consumers from hackers and cyber criminals from accessing devices with internet or network connectivity - from smartphones to games consoles and ... read more

07-05-2024

New Companies House powers

The recently introduced Economic Crime and Transparency Act has gifted Companies House a range of new powers aimed at reducing exploitation by corporate entities to pursue illegal enterprise. The aim of the new reforms are: Introducing identity verification for all new and existing registered company directors, People with Significant Control, and those delivering documents to the Registrar. ... read more

02-05-2024

VAT boost to charitable donations

The government is looking to introduce a new relief that would provide a VAT boost to charitable donations. The new VAT relief would be designed to encourage businesses to donate everyday items to charities without creating a VAT liability. A 12-week consultation on the proposed changes will be launched before 23 July 2024. Under the current rules, firms do not pay VAT on any goods they donate ... read more

02-05-2024

New tips guidance published

New rules that stop employers from withholding tips from people working in the hospitality, leisure and services sectors are a step closer following the publication of a new Code of Practice on tipping. The Employment (Allocation of Tips) Act 2023 colloquially known as the Tipping Act received Royal Assent on 2 May 2023. However, the measures in the Act do not come into force until all the ... read more

02-05-2024

Self-employed tax basis period reform

The self-employed tax basis period reform has changed the way trading income is allocated to tax years. Under the reforms, the tax basis period has changed from a ‘current year basis’ to a ‘tax year basis’. This means that all sole trader and partnership businesses must now report their profits on a tax year basis, beginning with the self-assessment return due by 31 January 2025 (covering the tax ... read more

02-05-2024

Directors who are liable for unpaid tax

HMRC has the power to make directors personally liable for paying the tax debts of companies they have been involved in under certain limited circumstances. This can also apply to certain other individuals associated with a company. A joint and several liability notice tells the recipient that they are personally responsible, along with the company and anyone else issued with a notice, to pay the ... read more

02-05-2024

Business rates relief in England

Business rates are a tax on non-domestic premises, including most commercial properties such as shops, offices, pubs, warehouses and factories. The money raised through business rates is used to help fund local services like the police, fire and rescue services. Business rates are generally calculated by multiplying the rateable value of commercial premises by the business rates multiplier before ... read more

02-05-2024

Hiring customs agents

Customs declarations can be difficult and time consuming to complete. Businesses can make their own custom's declarations; however, this is complex and requires specialist skills and software. Most businesses use a specialist such as a customs agent, broker, freight forwarder or fast parcel operator to submit import and export customs declarations on their behalf. HMRC publishes a regularly ... read more

30-04-2024

Free management course for SMEs

The government has launched the new Help to Grow: Management Essentials course; a short online course with practical tips and resources for small business leaders. It is based on the 12-week Help to Grow: Management Course and is suited for leaders of newer or smaller SMEs, or those who are looking to explore the principles of business growth and management before taking the next step and ... read more

30-04-2024

Post Office Offences Bill to be extended

The Government has tabled amendments to expand the territorial extent of the Post Office Offences Bill. Convictions resulting from the Post Office Horizon scandal in Northern Ireland will now be within scope. This blanket exoneration will automatically quash convictions brought about by the scandal, including 26 in Northern Ireland, clearing the names of many people who have had their lives ... read more

25-04-2024

Childcare Account chores

HMRC’s Childcare account can be used to claim free childcare (if eligible) or pay for Tax-Free Childcare. HMRC’s sign in page for the account states that in order ‘…to keep getting 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 rules that must be met to claim free childcare via the Childcare Account. As ... read more

25-04-2024

Do’s and don’ts for Standard Visitors to the UK

There is useful guidance published on GOV.UK that explains the do’s and don’ts for Standard Visitors to the UK. Visitors to the UK who are classed as a ‘Standard Visitor’ are allowed in the UK for tourism, business, study (courses up to 6 months) and other permitted activities. Permitted activities include the following: for tourism, for example on a holiday or vacation; to see your family or ... read more

25-04-2024

Bikes for employees

The Cycle to Work scheme allows employers to provide bicycles and cyclists’ safety equipment to employees as a tax-free benefit. The scheme must be offered to all employees and the bike must be used mainly for qualifying journeys i.e., between home and work. However, private use of the bike is also allowed. Where the scheme conditions are satisfied employees can benefit from a significant tax and ... read more

25-04-2024

Tax-free home sales

In general, there is no Capital Gains Tax (CGT) liability created when a property used as the main family residence is sold. An investment property which has never been used as a home will not qualify. This relief from CGT is commonly known as private residence relief. Taxpayers are entitled to full relief from CGT when all of the following conditions are met: The family home has been the ... read more

25-04-2024

Transferring unused nil rate band for IHT

The Inheritance Tax residence nil rate band (RNRB) is a transferable allowance for married couples and civil partners (per person) when their main residence is passed down to a direct descendent such as children or grandchildren after their death. The allowance increased to the present maximum level of £175,000 from 6 April 2020. The allowance is available to the deceased person’s children or ... read more

25-04-2024

Checking your National Insurance records

There is an online service available on HMRC to check your National Insurance Contributions (NIC) record online. The service is available at https://www.gov.uk/check-national-insurance-record In order to use this service, you will need to have a Government Gateway account. If you do not have an account, you can apply to set one up online. By signing in to the 'Check your National Insurance ... read more

24-04-2024

Tipping boost

The government’s Tipping Act is a step closer to coming into force, as the Code of Practice is published and laid before Parliament. The new Code of Practice will protect the tips of more than 2 million workers giving them a fair share of the tips received by a company. Millions of UK workers are set to take home an estimated £200 million more of their hard-earned cash, as landmark legislation on ... read more

24-04-2024

Smart energy

In a recent press release, the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero confirmed that consumers are set to benefit from cheaper and more convenient energy deals as part of new measures to create a smart, flexible electricity system to help save money on bills. They said: “New proposals set out in a recent consultation will introduce minimum requirements for cyber security and grid ... read more

18-04-2024

Payrolling employee expenses and benefits

Employers can register on a voluntary basis (before the start of the tax year) to report and account for tax on certain benefits and expenses via the RTI system. This is known as payrolling and removes the requirement to complete a P11D for the selected benefits at the tax year end. The deadline for submitting the 2023-24 forms P11D, P11D(b) and P9D is 6 July 2024. These forms can be submitted ... read more