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Xitax Accounting Solutions

Making Tax Digital for VAT public pilot opens and deferral for some businesses.

HMRC has opened the Making Tax Digital for VAT (MTDfV) public pilot. However certain VAT-registered businesses (around 3.5% according to HMRC) with more complex requirements will be deferred from being subject to MTD for six months.

Essentially, the public pilot is now open to sole traders and companies using standard VAT accounting. This applies whether returns are done monthly or quarterly provided they are up to date. Those signing up for the pilot will be required to keep their VAT records digitally from the first day of the period covered by their next VAT Return and submit their return using the appropriate software.

Six months’ deferral
Making Tax Digital for VAT is to be introduced from 1 April 2019. However, HMRC has announced that the mandated implementation has been deferred until 1 October 2019 for certain taxpayers:

‘not for profit’ organisations that are not set up as a company
VAT divisions
VAT groups
public sector entities required to provide additional information on their VAT return (Government departments, NHS Trusts)
local authorities
public corporations
those required to make payments on account (very large traders)
Annual Accounting Scheme users.

Pilot testing for these groups is expected to open in Spring 2019.

For help with MTD please contact us.
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Automatic enrolment reaches 8 million

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has confirmed than eight million employees have signed up for a workplace pension since the launch of automatic enrolment.

The introduction of automatic enrolment was expected to lead to around eight million workers saving more for their retirement and this milestone has already been reached with hundreds of thousands more employers still to enrol staff over the coming months.

Minister for Pensions and Financial Inclusion Guy Opperman said:

‘Reaching this eight million figure is a formidable achievement and represents a huge number of people on the path to a more financially secure retirement.’

‘But we cannot be complacent and as contribution rates rise we know there is more to be done. That’s why our automatic enrolment review, which will report back later this year, is so vital to the future of this life-changing policy.’

TPR’s report shows that at the end of June 2017, 8,165,000 workers were enrolled in workplace pensions. Darren Ryder, TPR's Director of Automatic Enrolment, said:

‘Tens of thousands more people every week are signing up to a new workplace pension through automatic enrolment. Employers are continuing to become compliant and to remain so, allowing their staff to get the pensions they are entitled to.’

‘There are more than 500,000 more employers whose duties are still to begin over the coming months. I would urge each and every one of them to check today that they know what they need to do and when they need to do it so they can seek our help if they need it.’

If you would like help or advice on complying with your Auto Enrolment duties please do get in touch.

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VAT Refunds

HMRC usually takes 10 working days to repay VAT refunds (from the day of HMRC receiving your VAT Return).

However, if you haven’t heard anything after 21 days you should contact HMRC.

You may get compensation (known as a ‘repayment supplement’) if HMRC takes longer than 30 days to approve (‘authorise’) your repayment (conditions apply).
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Latest guidance for employers

HMRC have issued the latest version of the Employer Bulletin. This edition has articles on a number of issues including:

P11D and P11D(b) filing and payment deadlines.

Paying the right amount of tax through PAYE

Construction industry scheme repayment claims for limited companies

The Apprenticeship Levy and funding of apprenticeship training

Tax-free childcare rollout including guidance on dealing with employee opt outs of current childcare voucher schemes

Student Loan employer prompts where deductions have not been made

GCSEs in England - new grading system explained for employers.

If you have any queries on payroll matters please contact us.
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ICO warning as business fined £60,000 following cyber attack

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is warning SMEs to take care or face a fine. The warning comes after a company which suffered a cyber attack was fined £60,000.

The investigation by the ICO found Boomerang Video Ltd based in Berkshire failed to take basic steps to stop its website being attacked.

Sally Anne Poole, ICO enforcement manager, said:

‘Regardless of your size, if you are a business that handles personal information then data protection laws apply to you.’

‘If a company is subject to a cyber attack and we find they haven’t taken steps to protect people’s personal information in line with the law, they could face a fine from the ICO. And under the new General Data Protection Legislation (GDPR) coming into force next year, those fines could be a lot higher.’

‘Boomerang Video failed to take basic steps to protect its customers’ information from cyber attackers. Had it done so, it could have prevented this attack and protected the personal details of more than 26,000 of its customers.’
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Additional Stamp Duty Surcharge - married, divorced:

Married couples are treated as one individual for SDLT purposes. So if the wife owns the family home in her sole name and the husband then purchases a property in his own sole name, they will have to pay the additional 3% surcharge.

However, spouses or civil partners that are permanently separated are not treated as one unit when making a purchase, therefore, they are exempt from the extra surcharge (certain conditions apply)
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