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Debt respite scheme launched

05/05/2021

A new scheme, aptly named Breathing Space, was launched 4 May 2021. Breathing Space will give those facing financial difficulties space to receive debt advice, or mental health crisis treatment, without pressure from creditors or mounting debts. Under the scheme, people will be given legal protections from their creditors for 60 days,

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New self-build initiative

29/04/2021

In a surprise weekend announcement, the Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has revealed new plans for £150 million of funding to make it easier and more affordable for people to build their own homes. The new “Help to Build” low deposit mortgage scheme will help self and custom home building become a realistic option to get

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Tax on savings interest

29/04/2021

If you have taxable income of less than £17,570 in 2021-22 you will have no tax to pay on interest received. This figure is calculated by adding the £5,000 starting rate limit for savings (where 0% of the interest is taxable) to the current £12,570 personal allowance. However, it is important to note that if your total non-savings income

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Tax-free capital gains

29/04/2021

As with Income Tax personal allowances, taxpayers have an annual exempt amount for Capital Gains Tax (CGT) which is forfeited if not used. The annual exemption for individuals in 2021-22 is £12,300. Whilst most taxpayers are aware of their annual tax-free allowance and the exemption for the qualifying sale of the family home there are

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VAT – transfer as a going concern

29/04/2021

The transfer of a business as a going concern (TOGC) rules concern the VAT liability of the sale of a business. Normally the sale of the assets of a VAT registered or VAT registerable business will be subject to VAT at the appropriate rate. Where the sale of a business includes assets and meets certain conditions the sale will be

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Restarting a dormant or non-trading company

29/04/2021

HMRC must be informed when a non-trading or dormant company starts trading again and becomes active for Corporation Tax. 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,

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Changing the terms of a salary sacrifice arrangement

29/04/2021

A salary sacrifice arrangement is effectively an agreement to reduce an employee’s entitlement to cash pay, usually in return for a non-cash benefit. This can include items such as company cars, childcare vouchers and additional employer pension contributions. The tax and NIC advantages of certain benefits provided as part of a salary

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Tax Diary May/June 2021

29/04/2021

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 return for the month ended 5 May 2021. 19 May 2021 - CIS tax

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End to COVID-19 adjusted right to work checks

29/04/2021

The government has confirmed, in its updated guidance on carrying out right to work checks during the coronavirus pandemic, that the temporary COVID-19 adjusted right to work check process will come to an end on 16 May 2021. This temporary process, in place since 30 March 2020, has allowed right to work checks to be carried out over video

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The Mortgage Guarantee Scheme

22/04/2021

One of the measures announced at the Budget was the introduction of a new Mortgage Guarantee Scheme to help home buyers purchase property. The scheme was officially made available from Monday, 19 April 2021. The new scheme is designed for prospective home buyers who only have a small deposit and are therefore unable to obtain mortgage

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Recovery Loan Scheme

22/04/2021

The new Recovery Loan Scheme was launched on 6 April 2021. The new scheme allows businesses of any size to access loans and other kinds of finance between £25,000 and £10 million. The scheme will remain open until 31 December 2021 (subject to review). The scheme is intended to provide further support to businesses to help them recover

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Keeping self-employed tax records

22/04/2021

If you are self-employed as a sole trader or as a partner in a business partnership, then you must keep suitable business records as well as separate personal records of your income. For tax purposes, the business records must be held for at least 5 years from the 31 January submission deadline for the relevant tax year. For example,

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Treasury directive re fourth SEISS grant

22/04/2021

HM Treasury has published a further Treasury Direction made under the Coronavirus Act 2020, ss. 71 and 76, which modifies and extends the effect of the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS). The new Direction mainly deals with the expansion of the SEISS from 1 February 2021 to 30 April 2021, officially referred to as the SEISS

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Correcting errors on VAT returns

22/04/2021

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. However, in order to be able to do so, there are three important conditions that must be met: The error must be below the reporting

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Small trading tax exemption for charities

22/04/2021

The tax treatment of charities can be complex. Many charities trade either as part of their charitable interests or to raise funds. As a first step, any charity hoping to benefit from any beneficial tax treatment needs to be recognised as a charity for UK tax purposes by HMRC as well as meeting other criteria. A charity will not pay tax

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Vaccine for your business

20/04/2021

There is a poignant similarity between the effects of COVID on us personally and our businesses. Thankfully, the possible dire consequences of catching the Coronavirus bug are being countered by a variety of vaccines. Fingers crossed that these will ease the pressure on the NHS and minimise the distress that this dreadful virus has

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A reminder that not all costs are costs…

20/04/2021

Costs are defined as something that has to be paid or spent to acquire something. Costs include the acquisition of: An object, say material required to convert into saleable goods. A service, for example, sub-contact labour or A right, the rates you pay to occupy business premises. In your accounts, these costs would appear as

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HMRC’s new penalty regime

15/04/2021

HMRC’s new points-based penalty regime for late submission and payment will start from 1 April 2022. The changes will apply in the first instance to the submission of VAT returns for VAT return periods beginning on or after 1 April 2022. The penalty regime will then be extended to Making Tax Digital (MTD) Income Tax Self-Assessment

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One-off £500 payment for working households receiving tax-credits

15/04/2021

As part of the March 2021 Budget, the Chancellor announced that the temporary £20 weekly uplift in Universal Credits would continue for a further six months, until the end of September 2021. It was also confirmed that Working Tax Credit claimants would receive equivalent support. It appears that it was operationally difficult for this

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Property repossessions from 1 April 2021

15/04/2021

There have been a significant number of measures introduced to help those experiencing financial difficulties because of coronavirus. Throughout the course of the pandemic, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has sought to ensure that lenders provide tailored support to mortgage borrowers who continue to face payment difficulties due to

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Repaying overclaimed SEISS grants

15/04/2021

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 repaying HMRC state that you must tell HMRC if you were not eligible to have claimed the grant. For example: for the first or second grant, your business was not

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Lockdown changes 12 April 2021

15/04/2021

Even the unseasonably cold weather does not seem to have stopped people in England getting their first taste of normality for many months as many restrictions were lifted on 12th April 2021. The full list of changes that came into effect in England from 12 April 2021 are listed on GOV.UK as follows: non-essential retail can

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Website development costs

15/04/2021

One of the main areas to consider in deciding how to treat a deductible expense is whether the cost is revenue or capital in nature. There is no single, simple test that can be applied to decide which items are capital expenditure and which are revenue. This can only be determined by reference to the relevant facts that applied at the

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Archiving international trade documents

08/04/2021

There are important rules that all businesses must follow to keep business and accounting records accessible if requested by HMRC. The exact documentation that must be held and the time limits for doing so can vary significantly. For example, most company records must be held for at least 6 years from the end of the last company financial

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National Minimum and Living Wage increases 1 April 2021

08/04/2021

The new National Minimum Wage (NMW) and National Living Wage (NLW) rates came into effect on 1 April 2021. The new rate for the NLW is £8.91 which is a 19p increase over last year. The NLW is the minimum hourly rate that must be paid to those aged 23 or over. The NLW used to apply only to those aged 25 and over but from 1 April 2021 has

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Companies can claim super-deduction from 1 April

08/04/2021

The new super-deduction tax break, that will allow companies to deduct 130% of the cost of any qualifying investment from their taxable profits, is available on most new plant and machinery investments that ordinarily qualify for 18% main rate writing down allowances. This means that for every £1 a company invests they can reduce their

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Exempt beneficial loans

08/04/2021

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

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Claims to reduce payments on account

08/04/2021

Self-Assessment taxpayers are usually required to pay their Income Tax liabilities in three instalments each year. The first two payments are due on 31 January during the tax year and 31 July following the tax year. These payments on account are based on 50% each of the previous year’s net Income Tax liability. In addition, the third (or

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Annual party benefits

08/04/2021

The cost of a staff party or other annual entertainment is generally allowed as a deduction for tax purposes. If you meet the various criteria outlined below then there is no requirement to report anything to HMRC or pay tax and National Insurance. There will also be no taxable benefit charged to employees. An annual function offered

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5% late penalties apply from 1 April 2021

01/04/2021

Self-Assessment taxpayers that failed to pay their outstanding tax liabilities or set up a payment plan by midnight on 1 April 2021 will be charged a 5% late payment penalty charge. Under the normal rules a 5% late payment penalty would have been charged if tax remained outstanding or a payment plan has not been set up before 3 March

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