Smarter accounting

Give gifts on 5th December to celebrate Sinterklaas

Give gifts on 5th December

3 December 2019, Advocates, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, General, Sole Traders

You can give gifts to your staff and customers at any time of the year. Learn how to avoid the pitfalls of paying tax and VAT on your generosity.

Tax charge on a director's loan

Tax charge on a Director’s Loan

20 September 2019, Companies, General

When your company has a tax charge on a director’s loan If you are a director or shareholder in a ‘close’ company, any money owed to the company can trigger a tax charge on a director’s loan. What is a close company? A close company is broadly defined as a company which is under the […]

How many VAT registered businesses in the UK need to sign up to Making Tax Digital

MTD Registration – progress to date

19 August 2019, Advocates, Barristers, Companies, Sole Traders

MTD Registration – Key numbers The Making Tax Digital (MTD) rules became law for VAT periods starting on or after 1 April 2019. MTD registration requires VAT-registered businesses with taxable turnover over £85,000 to keep their VAT records digitally.  They must also submit their VAT return direct from their Making Tax Digital-compatible software.  The MTD […]

Pension re-declaration of compliance

Pension re-declaration of compliance

13 May 2019, Auto Enrolment, Charities, Companies, Employer, Sole Traders

How to complete your auto-enrolment pension re-declaration of compliance Any employers who started employing workers before 1st October 2017 will have been issued with a staging date.  This is the date when they had to have a qualifying auto enrolment pension in place.  For anyone who starting employing people after 30th September 2017 pension duties […]

Pension Re-Enrolment

Pension re-enrolment

8 May 2019, Auto Enrolment, Charities, Companies, Employer, Sole Traders

Pension Re-Enrolment due every three years All employers should now be aware of the their pension obligations.  Any employers who started employing workers before 1st October 2017 will have been issued with a staging date.  This is the date when they had to have a qualifying auto enrolment pension in place.  For new businesses / […]

How many VAT registered businesses in the UK need to sign up to Making Tax Digital

How many VAT registered businesses in the UK need to sign up to Making Tax Digital

30 March 2019, Advocates, Barristers, Companies, Sole Traders

How many VAT registered businesses in the UK are there? Figures from the Office of National Statistics state that there are 2.67 million businesses registered for VAT and/or PAYE.  Any business with employees must register for PAYE, but not all of these businesses are registered for VAT.  This prompts the question – how many VAT […]

How late can I register for Making Tax Digital for VAT?

29 April 2019, Advocates, Barristers, Companies, Sole Traders

When is my first Making Tax Digital VAT return due? If you are asking yourself “How late can I register for Making Tax Digital for VAT? (MTDfV)” you are likely to be storing up problems.  Suppose you submit quarterly VAT returns to June and have to register for Making Tax Digital for VAT (MTDfV); your […]

Has Making Tax Digital for VAT been delayed?

Has Making Tax Digital for VAT been delayed?

15 March 2019, Advocates, Barristers, Companies, Sole Traders

Has Making Tax Digital for VAT been delayed? Making tax digital for VAT legislation requires you to have “digital links” between your financial data and your VAT reports to HMRC.  What changes might you need to make to your record keeping to achieve this?  A “soft landing” delays the date that you need to have […]

Scottish BarAdvocates Making Tax Digital for VAT Questions and Answers

Advocates Making Tax Digital for VAT Questions and Answers

2 March 2019, Advocates, Barristers, Companies, Sole Traders

Advocates Making Tax Digital for VAT Questions and Answers Tim Alter gave a lunchtime talk to the Scottish Bar on 1st March 2019.  The members of the Faculty of Advocates were highly engaged in the session on Making Tax Digital for VAT.  There was a lively and heartfelt response including a wide ranging discussion on […]

Advocates Making Tax Digital for VAT seminar in Edinburgh

Advocates Making Tax Digital for VAT seminar in Edinburgh

28 February 2019, Advocates, Barristers, Companies, Sole Traders

Advocates Making Tax Digital for VAT seminar We are looking forward to presenting the Advocates Making Tax Digital for VAT seminar in the Mackenzie Building in Edinburgh on 1st March 2019. Tim Alter will be presenting the lunchtime talk to the Faculty of Advocates.  For any advocates who can’t make the Edinburgh talk at 1:00 […]

Making Tax Digital for VAT

Making Tax Digital for VAT – why have HMRC sent a letter?

22 November 2018, Advocates, Barristers, Companies, Creative Industries, Sole Traders

HMRC VAT letter – what does it mean? Many business have received an HMRC VAT letter in the last week.  This letter informs VAT registered businesses that HMRC processes are being modernised, known as Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT. What do I need to do? The HMRC VAT letter doesn’t require you to do anything […]

Always read the application details

What an employer is looking for

1 May 2018, Companies, Employer, General

How do you know what an employer is looking for when they post a job advert? This post will point you in the right direction

How to reclaim extra VAT

2 December 2017, Advocates, Companies, Creative Industries, Sole Traders

HMRC’s VAT Input Tax Toolkit highlights common errors businesses make when they reclaim VAT on purchases.  As you would expect from an HMRC publication it focuses on situations where you can’t or shouldn’t reclaim VAT.

Charities and Corporation Tax

Charities and Corporation Tax

16 November 2017, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries

Charities and Corporation Tax returns are often misunderstood.  Charities may think that they are automatically exempt from tax on all their income.  As the article explains below, charities may be subject to Corporation Tax on profits / surpluses.

Employer Liability Insurance covers an employer for risks to employees at work

Employers Liability Insurance – make sure you have it!

13 October 2017, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, Sole Traders

Following an anonymous complaint to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), a small Manchester-based company received a fine of £2,500 for failing to have adequate Employers Liability Insurance (ELI).  What are the rules?

Mid-sized businesses free tax advice

Mid-sized businesses free tax advice

27 September 2017, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer

HMRC has announced extra help from its tax specialists to offer mid-sized businesses free tax advice.

National Insurance for Company Directors

5 February 2017, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, Musicians

Most employees will pay Class 1 National Insurance each pay day.  The weekly threshold is £157 a week with the monthly threshold being £680.  If an employee earns above these amounts, they will start paying National Insurance above the threshold at 12%.  National Insurance for Company Directors can be worked out differently.

Money collected by Digital Tax Accounts

Flat Rate Scheme Reverse Charge VAT

30 September 2016, Advocates, Artists, Barristers, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, Musicians, Sole Traders

If a trader on the flat rate scheme for VAT purchases services from outside the UK, the business needs to account for Flat Rate Scheme Reverse Charge VAT according to Directive 2006/112/EC. Small businesses on the Flat Rate Scheme for VAT do not usually account for VAT on purchases.

PAYE refund – how to get one

25 September 2016, Charities, Companies, Employer

The normal process for reclaiming overpaid PAYE to HMRC is to deduct the amount HMRC owes you from your next regular payment.  For this reason HMRC does not normally process an automatic PAYE refund.

HMRC telephone scam

7 September 2016, Advocates, Artists, Barristers, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, Musicians, Sole Traders

There are two new scams that you need to be aware of.  Callers are leaving a phone message or posing as an HMRC investigator.  If you are on the receiving end of an HMRC telephone scam you can report it on 0300 1232040 or on the Action Fraud Website.

Firstport Start Up and Fine Tune Your Social Enterprise

Start Up and Fine Tune Your Social Enterprise

6 November 2016, Auto Enrolment, Charities, Companies, Employer

If you are thinking of starting up a social enterprise or need advice on running an existing business, come along to the Firstport event in Glasgow on Friday 11th November. A series of free workshops have been organised to help you Start Up and Fine Tune your Social Enterprise.

HMRC interest rate change can save you money

24 August 2016, Advocates, Artists, Barristers, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, Musicians, Sole Traders

Following the Bank of England’s cut in its base rate from 0.5% to 0.25% on 4th August the HMRC interest rate has changed too.

HMRC new bank account

20 June 2016, Advocates, Artists, Barristers, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, Musicians, Sole Traders

Most people will pay their tax electronically either through their payroll, direct debit or by bank transfer.  Tax payments made from overseas now go to the HMRC new bank details.

RTI Late Reporting Codes

19 June 2016, Auto Enrolment, Charities, Companies, Employer

All UK employers are required to report wage payments on or before wages are paid, under the system known as Real Time Information (RTI).  Under limited circumstances HMRC will accept late payroll information.  To avoid a late reporting penalty you will need to use one of the 7 remaining RTI late reporting codes.

Employment Allowance – how to get it

9 May 2016, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer

The employment allowance enables most employers to claim a £3,000 deduction against National Insurance Contributions.

Fine Tune Your Social Enterprise

24 February 2016, Auto Enrolment, Charities, Companies, Employer

If you are thinking of starting up a social enterprise or need advice on running an existing business, come along to the Firstport event in Paisley on Friday 26th February.

SRIT – the Scottish Rate of Income Tax

29 November 2015, Advocates, Artists, Barristers, Charities, Companies, Creative Industries, Employer, Musicians, Sole Traders

From 5th April 2016 a new Scottish Rate of Income Tax (SRIT) will come into force in Scotland.  Although is it currently anticipated that taxpayers in Scotland and the rest of the UK will pay the same rate of tax next year, it is likely that the regions will diverge in coming years as more power is devolved to Scotland.

Money collected by Digital Tax Accounts

Digital Tax Accounts – the end of tax returns?

26 November 2015, Advocates, Artists, Barristers, Companies, Creative Industries, Musicians, Sole Traders

The Spending Review and Autumn Statement 2015 from Chancellor George Osborne confirms that the government is committed to Digital Tax Accounts.  The following extract is from the transcript of the speech delivered on 25th November 2015: “We’re going to build one of the most digitally advanced tax administrations in the world.  So that every individual and every small business will have their own digital tax account by the end of the decade, in order to manage their tax online.”

Not the new childcare voucher sheme

5 November 2015, Advocates, Artists, Barristers, Charities, Companies, Employer, Musicians, Sole Traders

A new government-backed tax-free childcare scheme was set to go live in the autumn of 2015 but so far it has not materialised.  What has happened and is this new scheme still going ahead or not?

Alterledger goes international

11 October 2015, Artists, Charities, Companies, Employer, Musicians, Sole Traders

We’re in Wales for the next few days We will be visiting clients in Cardiff over the next couple of days.  No time for the rugby, but spotted this crashing through Cardiff Castle. Creative Industries in Cardiff Cardiff is the home of BBC Wales, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Welsh National Opera and of course […]

Website by Haiwyre