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Category Archives: Blog

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…
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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…
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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…
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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…
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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.…
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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…
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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…
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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…
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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…
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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…
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