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New guidance on sexual harassment and harassment at work

22/01/2020

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has published new technical guidance on sexual harassment and harassment at work. It replaces previous guidance published in December 2017. The new guidance explains employers’ legal responsibilities and the practical steps they should take to prevent and respond to harassment and...

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Don’t be taken in by this scam

21/01/2020

The Insolvency Service has warned that fraudsters have been contacting investors in insolvent schemes claiming to be from the Official Receiver’s office or to have been appointed by the Official Receiver to help recover funds for a fee. These contacts are fraudulent. The Insolvency Service provides services to those affected by...

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Disclosing VAT errors

21/01/2020

Where an error on a past VAT return is uncovered, you have a duty to correct the error as soon as possible. As a general rule, you can use your current VAT return to make any necessary adjustment. However, there are three important conditions that must be met: The error must be below the reporting threshold. The error must not be...

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Ways that HMRC can collect overdue tax

21/01/2020

If you are unable to pay your tax bill or need time to pay then it is in your best interests to contact HMRC as soon as possible. For example, you can apply to HMRC to make a payment plan and seek to agree a way forward. This can be done through the Payment Support Service (PSS). If the payment of overdue tax is unresolved, HMRC can take...

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HMRC publish strange late filing excuses?

21/01/2020

A recent press release by HMRC has revealed some of the oddest excuses for submitting a late tax return, that have been made during the past 10 years. The excuses ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous and included: My mother-in-law is a witch and put a curse on me. I was up a mountain in Wales and couldn’t find a post box or...

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Relief for CGT losses

21/01/2020

Usually, if you sell an asset for less than you paid for it you would make a capital loss. As a general rule, if the asset would have been liable to CGT if a gain had resulted when sold, then the loss should be an allowable deduction. The exact treatment of losses depends on whether they are: losses of the same year of assessment as...

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When is a Will revoked?

21/01/2020

We have previously covered the importance of making a Will and ensuring that assets are divided amongst beneficiaries in the way best suited to personal circumstances. One of the most important reasons for doing so is to ensure that individuals do not die intestate (without a Will). This avoids estates being distributed in accordance with...

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Scottish 2020 Budget

21/01/2020

Derek Mackay, Scotland’s finance secretary has announced that the Scottish Government’s Budget will be published for 2020-21 on 6 February 2020. The date has been selected in order to allow the Scottish Government time to prepare for the new tax year. This is the first time that Scotland has held a Budget before the rest of...

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New taskforce to target waste criminals

21/01/2020

A new taskforce has been launched to tackle serious and organised waste crime, such as dumping hazardous materials on private land and falsely labelling waste so it can be exported abroad to unsuspecting countries. This will be the first time that law enforcement agencies, environmental regulators, HMRC and the National Crime Agency have...

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Statutory maternity, adoption, paternity, shared parental and sick pay to rise from April 2020

15/01/2020

According to proposals set out in a government policy paper, the revised rates for statutory maternity pay (SMP), statutory adoption pay (SAP), statutory paternity pay (SPP), statutory shared parental pay (ShPP) and statutory sick pay (SSP) for tax year 2020/21 are to be as follows: the standard weekly rates of SMP, SAP, SPP and ShPP...

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Tax allowances you can claim for business cars

14/01/2020

Capital Allowances allow your business to secure tax relief for certain capital expenditure. Qualifying expenditure on cars must usually be allocated to one of two general pools of expenditure. Which pool is appropriate depends on the car’s CO2 emissions. Expenditure on cars with CO2 emissions over 110g/km will be dealt with in the...

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On your bike – tax free cycling

14/01/2020

There are special rules involving bicycles for work use, usually referred to as 'Cycle to Work' arrangements. The Cycle to Work scheme was introduced almost 20 years ago to help promote the use of healthy ways to commute to work using an environmentally friendly mode of transport. The scheme allows employers to provide bicycles...

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Public transport costs and tax

14/01/2020

There are certain tax rules that it is important to consider if you pay for the public transport costs of your employees. The provision of public transport costs includes season tickets provided for employees, season ticket costs reimbursed to employees, loans made to employees to buy season tickets and contributions to subsidised or free...

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Money laundering and terrorist financing

14/01/2020

The money laundering rules are designed to protect the UK financial system and put in place certain controls to prevent businesses being used for money laundering by criminals and terrorists. The money laundering and terrorist financing (amendment) regulations 2019 (MLRs) came into force on 10 January 2020. This updates the existing...

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What qualifies for First Year Allowances?

14/01/2020

Businesses can claim a 100% first-year allowance (FYA) on the purchase of certain qualifying Plant and Machinery (P&M). The cash-flow benefit of accelerated tax relief is designed to encourage businesses to invest in capital items which help reduce their carbon footprint by being energy and water efficient. The list of qualifying...

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VAT - what is a limited cost trader?

14/01/2020

The VAT Flat Rate Scheme (FRS) has been designed to simplify the way a business accounts for VAT and in so doing reduce the administration costs of complying with the VAT legislation. The scheme is open to businesses that expect their annual taxable turnover in the next 12 months to be no more than £150,000. The limited cost trader...

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Close down a company by striking it off the register

14/01/2020

There are a limited range of circumstances when a company can request to be removed from the register (known as being struck off). For example, a voluntary strike-off can be requested by a dormant or non-trading company. A limited company can be closed down by using this striking-off process, but only if it: hasn't traded or sold...

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Did you file your tax return on Christmas Day?

07/01/2020

A new press release by HMRC has highlighted the fact that 3,003 taxpayers took the time to file their tax return online on Christmas Day with a further 9,254 taxpayers completing their tax returns on Boxing Day. More than 11 million taxpayers are expected to complete a 2018-19 Self-Assessment tax return this year, on or before 31 January...

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