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Employing staff for the first time?

16/05/2024

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

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Register an overseas company

16/05/2024

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

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Beneficial tax-exempt loans

16/05/2024

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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Closing a limited company

16/05/2024

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 This could be because the company structure no longer suits your needs, your business is no longer active, or the company is insolvent.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

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Check a VAT number

16/05/2024

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

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Deferring National Insurance payments

16/05/2024

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

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Customs declaration deadline

13/05/2024

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

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Company names – new regulations

13/05/2024

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

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Time to renew tax credits

09/05/2024

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

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Act now to claim dormant funds

09/05/2024

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

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Check if HMRC contact is genuine

09/05/2024

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

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How to claim R&D expenditure credit

09/05/2024

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

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Do you need to register for Economic Crime Levy?

09/05/2024

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

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Lifetime transfers and liability to IHT

09/05/2024

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

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Tax Diary June/July 2024

07/05/2024

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

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Cyber protection laws introduced

07/05/2024

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

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New Companies House powers

07/05/2024

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

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VAT boost to charitable donations

02/05/2024

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

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New tips guidance published

02/05/2024

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

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Self-employed tax basis period reform

02/05/2024

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

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Directors who are liable for unpaid tax

02/05/2024

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

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Business rates relief in England

02/05/2024

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

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Hiring customs agents

02/05/2024

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

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Free management course for SMEs

30/04/2024

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

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Post Office Offences Bill to be extended

30/04/2024

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,

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Childcare Account chores

25/04/2024

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

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

25/04/2024

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,

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Bikes for employees

25/04/2024

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

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Tax-free home sales

25/04/2024

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

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Transferring unused nil rate band for IHT

25/04/2024

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

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Checking your National Insurance records

25/04/2024

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

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Tipping boost

24/04/2024

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

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