Danger – Bad tax advice!

Posted on September 5th, by Helen in Tax. Comments Off

Did you know that the information that HMRC give you is often incorrect?

A civil Service Capability Review has found that one in four of us contacting HMRC is given incorrect or incomplete information. ONE IN FOUR!

That’s a massive problem.

The official message is that Self Assessment is easy, but it clearly is not true. Tax is complicated and it changes every single year. Even for small mounts of money, tax is taxing!


Tax Summaries

Posted on June 5th, by Helen in Tax summaries. Comments Off

Tax Summaries are coming soon as announced by HMRC.

Tax Summaries are part of the government’s commitment to a transparent personal tax system. Nobody likes to pay tax but the government hopes that we will become more supportive of taxation if we have a better understanding of how our taxes are spent.

Tax Summaries will detail  an individual taxpayer’s income and National Insurance contributions for the tax year, and will include a table and a chart to show how each individual contributes to public expenditure such as healthcare, education and defence.

This is not entirely new as the Tax Calculator has been around for a few years now. However, the Tax Calculator is an estimate based on numbers entered by the user. Tax Summaries will be based on actual figures taken from the tax-payers Self Assessment tax return.

Tax summaries will be rolled out … Read More »

The Statutory Residence Test – or, am I a UK taxpayer?

Posted on May 19th, by Helen in Tax. Comments Off

The Statutory Residence Test was introduced from April 2013 to determine your tax residence; it sets out what makes you UK resident for tax purposes.

With the ease of global travel we have a lot more freedom to choose where we want to live and work. So why should it matter whether we are resident in the UK for tax? Well, if you are UK tax resident then you pay tax on all of your worldwide earnings. And if not, then you will not be entitled to the same tax allowances as a UK resident.

The Statutory Residence Test works as follows:

If you spend 183 days or more  in the UK then you are a UK resident for taxes.

But you will automatically be resident overseas for tax and not the UK if

1.      You spend less than 16 … Read More »

Interim or final dividend?

Posted on December 9th, by Helen in business advice, Finance, Profit. Comments Off

Does it matter whether the dividend is final or interim if the tax treatment is the same? Dividends are used by many business owners as a tax-efficient way to extract profit from a company. So it is important to understand the procedure for paying them.

The Companies Act 2006

It isn’t HMRC that makes the distinction between the two dividend types, but company law. The Companies Act 2006 says “The company may by ordinary resolution declare dividends, and the directors may decide to pay interim dividends”

So one group of people, the directors,may pay interim dividends, but shareholder approval must be obtained before a final dividend is paid.

So why is HMRC interested?

HMRC doesn’t particularly care which type of dividend is
paid. It is interested in whether the payment is really a dividend or whether
it was salary a bonus or a loan payment. As … Read More »

We have no payroll, we have no employees!

Posted on October 18th, by Helen in business advice, News, Payroll. Comments Off

If you have employees then by now you should be filing on-line payroll returns every time you pay your employees. From 6 April 2013 employers started reporting payroll information to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) in real time. You may see this referred to as Real Time Information – or RTI. This means that employers (or their accountant or bookkeeper) have to:

send details to HMRC every time they run the payroll and pay an employee, at the time they pay them
use payroll software to send this information electronically as part of their routine payroll process

But we don’t have any employees!

Really? Are you sure?

Think very carefully about all of the people you make payments to. Are you really sure that they are self-employed?

Now that I have planted a seed a doubt in your mind take a look at the Employment Status … Read More »

Saving VAT – Good News for Churches

Posted on October 2nd, by Helen in VAT. Comments Off

The Government has announced an extension to the Listed Places of Worship Scheme which will take effect from 1 October 2013. The Listed Places of Worship Scheme makes a grant available towards the cost of the VAT on building work for listed places of worship.

More churches will be eligible to claim from 1 October 2013 when works to pipe organs, bells and bell ropes, and turret clocks may be included for claims under the scheme. Just as importantly professional fees will also become eligible when directly related to eligible building work. This reverses a previous change which forced local communities to find the additional cost of VAT on services such as architect’s fees.

In addition to these changes to the scope, administrative changes should simplify the claim procedure. This will allow applicants to make one claim every 12 months for eligible … Read More »