It is very easy in business, as in life, to get absorbed in the day-to-day running and to forget to take that step back once in a while, and consider, heaven forbid, how you, or your business would cope if the unexpected happened.
I hate to leave things to the last minute, so was very pleased when I was able to file the final tax returns of this season 3 days before the deadline! It’s so important to file those returns on time as there are severe penalties for filing late, even if you have no tax to pay.
However, to lighten the mood, I came across the following list of most unlikely excuses for filing late, provided by our dear friends at HMRC. They do have a sense of humour after all! So, to show that tax is not all dull and boring, I thought I’d share this with you! (And I particularly like #10!)
With employment supposedly rising and business confidence increasing, you might be considering expanding your workforce in the coming months. One of the questions I am often asked is “What will it cost to employ someone in my business?” So here is a little summary of the key points to consider, PLUS some details on a couple of government initiatives that are on the horizon to reduce that cost. Continue reading
Many small businesses do not have an accountant on their own payroll – they choose to outsource this role to an external provider, often a firm of accountants. But the traditional high-street firms of accountants are predominantly financial accountants and have been trained with a focus on accounting standards and tax. As a result, they have little real-life experience of actually running a business. They end up focussing on historical information and serve HMRC, Companies House and other external stakeholders rather than the business owners who are hiring them.
We’ve been lucky enough to gain several new, wonderful clients recently, and a necessary consequence of this is a professional handover from one set of accountants to another. Usually where it is a case of a limited company, this means handing over all the documents and working papers pertaining to the previous set of final accounts that were drawn up by the accountants.
Incredible though it seems, a recent survey I came across suggested that in the UK, SMEs could be losing up to £3.7 billion a year simply by forgetting to invoice for goods or services provided to customers. Apparently one in five SMEs admit to having forgotten to invoice for goods or services at least once.
Which led me to have a look at my own business and ask myself the question – have I forgotten to invoice a client ever, and if I did, would I ever know about it?
We are already a year into the 5-year process of bringing ALL employers in the UK within the auto-enrolment regime. This places obligations on employers to provide a workplace pension for their employees AND to contribute into it. The very largest companies are the first to implement, but it’s not long now before auto-enrolment is going to hit the very smallest of companies also – and I predict that there are some challenging times ahead….
This is one of the topics which I am asked about, or discuss, with clients most during the average year, so I thought it would be good to summarise the main issues here so you can all refresh your memory / knowledge on this.
We have so many of our customers operating under Limited company structures and taking advantage of the tax benefits of withdrawing money as dividends, either in whole or in part, that it seemed like a good time for a general reminder of the Do’s and Don’ts when drawing dividends.