The New Stamp Duty Reforms

As of midnight 03 December 2014, the slap style bands for paying stamp duty land tax have been replaced by a graduated rate scheme similar to how you pay your tax on your personal self assessment tax returns. Under the old slab system buyers would pay a single rate on the entire purchase price of the property. Under the new system, you only pay stamp duty of the proportion...
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Written by Mark Nichols

HMRC Distraint Notice – what does this really mean

The HMRC Distraint Notice (EF1) is the process of legally taking possession of goods for sale at public auction to make payment towards (or in full) an unpaid tax bill. Only HMRC and landlords have the ability to do this without the need to go to court. This is not an empty bluff, HMRC can really do this. Because of its simplicity, HMRC are starting to use this other than ...
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Written by Mark Nichols

Cash ISA allowance up to £15,000 in New ISA

From 1st July 2014 all new and current cash and shares ISAs will become New ISAs.Previously, total contributions to any ISAs were restricted to a limit  (£11,520 for 13/14) for stocks and shares, only half of which (£5,670)  could be utilised for cash savings. It will now be possible for individuals to put any combination of cash or shares up to the value £15,...
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Written by Stanbridge Associates

Google Announces New Encryption Security for Gmail

There is some good news for medical practitioners who rely on Google’s Gmail for sending and receiving confidential information. Google has announced that their service has been upgraded to provide better security by encrypting all sent and received messages. This has been partly in response to information provided by Edward Snowden about the snooping powers of the Ameri...
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Written by Mark Nichols

Statutory Residence Test

The Statutory Residence test has been up datedThe statutory residence test looks at whether, and to what extent, an individual is liable to UK taxation.   With effect from 6 April 2013 the ordinary residence concept was abolished and replaced with the Statutory Residence Test “SRT”.   The SRT applies for the purposes of establishing your residence s...
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Written by Heather Colbeck

Patent Box & Research and Development

As many of our clients are the leaders in their field we would like to touch upon new legislation relating to Patent Box and research and development. The new legislation is yet to be tested and few people are aware of the potential benefits this legislation will bring to UK companies.The Patent Box scheme came into force in April 2013. The scheme allows Limited Companies ...
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Written by David Harris

Charitable Giving

Most gifts to charity are made either on appeal after a disaster strikes or regularly through a deed of covenant. There are many forms a charitable donation can take and can also be enhanced by tax relief. If you are interested in how to make your gift more efficient read on….Gift aidGift Aid is the primary method for tax efficient giving to charities. It can apply to an...
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Written by Vanessa Sanders - director

Transactions with Directors

There are a number of requirements when considering how companies interact with the directors whom govern them.  Basically these can be split into legal, disclosure and tax. LegalMembers’ (shareholders’) approvalIt is a legal requirement to obtain formal members’ approval for a number of transactions with directors as listed below.Directors’ long term (mo...
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Written by Vanessa Sanders - director

HMRC Self Assessment 2011/12 Discloser Settlement Scheme

HMRC has now offered a reduced penalty scheme to those who still have not filed their 2011/12 self assessment tax returns. This scheme runs until the 15 October 2013 and those who file a 2011/12 tax return during this time will fall under a reduced 10% penalty rate. After this time, the penalty regime will return to the HMRC defaults.From HMRC (penalties for missing tax re...
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Written by Mark Nichols

HMRC has launched its latest campaign

HMRC has launched its latest campaign, called ‘My Tax Return Catch Up’. This campaign is targeting those whom have failed to file self assessment tax returns for all years up to 2011/12.This is the most recent of HMRC’s  disclosure opportunities. Each campaign is designed to encourage certain groups of taxpayers to make a voluntary disclosure. The idea is to all...
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Written by Vanessa Sanders - director

Employer’s Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969

Under the Employers’ Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969 an employer is obligated to obtain Employers’ Liability Insurance to protect its employees should they be injured as a result of an accident at work, or become ill as a result of their work.In the event that the employer is responsible, compensation may have to be paid. Employers’ Liability Insurance ensu...
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Written by Catherine Cullen

Temporary period of RTI relaxation to be extended

HMRC have announced that, for businesses with fewer than 50 employees, the temporary relaxation of the new RTI (real time information) reporting rules will be extended from October 2013 to April 2014 (the end of the tax year).Under RTI, employers are required to send a full payment submission (FPS) electronic submission report before/when they make any payment to their emp...
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Written by Zelfie Pues

Proposed changes in the small company reporting regime seek to reduce the burden…

Recently on 12th June 2013 the European Parliament elected to adopt a revised accounting directive. The aim of the revised directive was to reduce the overall administrative burden faced by the modern small company by reducing the level of disclosure required within the annual financial statements (accounts).It is also hoped that the proposed changes will improve the quali...
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Tax planning - when does it work?

We are all familiar with the famous economist, John Maynard Keynes’ quote “The avoidance of taxes is the only intellectual pursuit that carries any reward” but where does the law think the divide lies between avoidance which is legal and evasion which is not?In times of economic stress the news focuses on those who are found not to be pulling their weight w...
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Written by Vanessa Sanders - director

Claiming training expenses

Last year doctors heard of what might have turned out to be a landmark case allowing a claim for training expenses deductible against  employment income and potentially the chance to obtain a tax refund. This case was that of HMRC v Banerjee [2010] EWCA Civ 843.The facts of the case are simple:Dr Banerjee was in a supernumary training post as a specialist registrar de...
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Written by Vanessa Sanders - director

Gift Aid

When an individual gives a donation to a charity relief for this can be claimed under Gift Aid provided they are taxpayers. The charity claims back an extra 25% of the amount donated and if the Tax payer is in the 40% or 45% band extra relief is made available when claimed on the Tax return, once this is claimed the overall net cost of making the donation reduces.If a Tax ...
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Partially-Exempt Businesses for VAT Purposes

 Exempt servicesThere are some goods and services on which VAT is not charged. These are exempt from VAT. All primary health care is exempt and this includes primary medical care provided in hospitals, both NHS and private. However, exemption also applies to services such as conducting medical examinations of individuals for employers or insurance companies provided t...
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Director’s Loan Accounts

In close companies (with five or fewer shareholders), the shareholders and directors are often one and the same.  This means that sometimes lines between owning the business and running it are blurred. HMRC views this blurring as not operating the company appropriately hence the director/shareholder has to find a way to show the clear lines of separation. This is usua...
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HMRC and Penalties

Penalties: reasonable excuse or careHMRC penalties are built upon the following schedules:•Inaccuracy in a document (Schedule 24, FA 2007)•Failure to notify HMRC of a liability (Schedule 42, FA 2008)•Failure to make a return on time (Schedule 55, FA 2009)•Failure to pay on time (Schedule 56, FA 2009)Within this recent regime we have provisions which have establishe...
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Written by Vanessa Sanders - director

HMRC to collect outstanding Class 2 NIC via tax codes from April 2014

From April 2014 HMRC may begin to adjust tax codes to collect any outstanding Class 2 National Insurance contributions (NICs).  This will affect anyone who is in PAYE employment or are receiving a UK based private pension and has any outstanding Class 2 NICs.HMRC will contact those affected to ask for payment or to inform them that they have ceased trading and th...
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Written by Zelfie Pues

The New Stamp Duty Reforms

As of midnight 03 December 2014, the slap style bands for paying stamp duty land tax have been replaced by a graduated rate scheme similar to how you pay your tax on your personal self assessment tax returns. Under the old slab system buyers would pay a single rate on the entire purchase price of the property. Under the new system, you only pay stamp duty of the proportion of the property that is in the tax band.
Read more

Written by Mark Nichols

Employment Allowance

A an employer, you will have received over the weekend, a letter from David Cameron telling you about a £2,000 National Insurance  break available to businesses and charities, which came into effect on 6 April 2014.
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HMRC Distraint Notice – what does this really mean

The HMRC Distraint Notice (EF1) is the process of legally taking possession of goods for sale at public auction to make payment towards (or in full) an unpaid tax bill. Only HMRC and landlords have the ability to do this without the need to go to court. This is not an empty bluff, HMRC can really do this. Because of its simplicity, HMRC are starting to use this other than other debt collection procedures.
Read more

Written by Mark Nichols

Cash ISA allowance up to £15,000 in New ISA

From 1st July 2014 all new and current cash and shares ISAs will become New ISAs.
Read more

Written by Stanbridge Associates

New HMRC Pay Packet Tax Debt Collection Powers

This week HMRC’s new powers will mean it will be able to collect up to £17,000 a year of tax debts directly from high earners’ pay packets. However, it is limited to those earning £90,000 or more.  The collection ceiling, has been previously set at £3,000 for these individuals. These powers represent HMRC’s new stance in cracking down on individuals who owe more than £1,000 in tax and have repeatedly failed to respond to HMRC tax demands.
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Written by Mark Nichols

Google Announces New Encryption Security for Gmail

There is some good news for medical practitioners who rely on Google’s Gmail for sending and receiving confidential information. Google has announced that their service has been upgraded to provide better security by encrypting all sent and received messages. This has been partly in response to information provided by Edward Snowden about the snooping powers of the American National Security Agency (NSA) on personal messages. These changes mean that “Gmail will always use an encrypted HTTPS connection when you check or send email. Gmail has supported HTTPS since the day it launched, and in 2010 we made HTTPS the default. [This] change means that no one can listen in on your messages as they go back and forth between you and Gmail’s servers—no matter if you're using public WiFi or logging in from your computer, phone or tablet” (Google’s Official Blog).
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Written by Mark Nichols