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Month: November 2019

Have you ever wondered why the UK tax year starts on 6th April?

In 1582 Pope Gregory xiii grew tired of the inaccuracies in the existing ‘Julian’ calendar and ordered the calendar to be changed. The Julian calendar named after Julius Caesar had been in place since 45 BC.

Caesar’s calendar differed from the solar calendar by 11½ minutes.

This was not a big problem at the start, however, after 500 years this small inaccuracy had started to build up to 10 days off the solar calendar.  With this in mind, Pope Gregory introduced the Gregorian calendar.

The Gregorian calendar reduced the length of the calendar year from 365.25 days to 365.2425, a reduction of 10 minutes 48 seconds per year!

This and a few other tweaks ensured Pope Gregory’s calendar was a much more accurate time keeper. The Gregorian Calendar was then introduced in Italy, Spain, Portugal and what was then the Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth.

The Gregorian Calendar was initially quite a slow burner in the British Empire, it wasn’t introduced until 1752.  By then the British calendar was 11 days off the rest of Europe, with this due to increase as time passed, the British knew it was time for a change.

On the old British Calendar the tax year began on March 25 (the old New Year’s Day).  In order to ensure against losing revenue it was decided by the British Treasury that the tax year, which started on March 25 1752, would be of the usual length (365 days) and therefore it would end on April 4, the following tax year beginning on April 5.

Time passed smoothly and most importantly accurately until 1800.  Unfortunately 1800 was not a leap year in the new Gregorian calendar but would have been in the old Julian system. Thus the treasury moved the start of the UK tax year from the April 5 to the April 6 and it has remained there ever since!

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Is your company dormant?

Dormant Companies are defined in 2 different ways by Companies House and HMRC:

A Dormant company at Companies House is if any transaction goes through the business, then you are not dormant.  There are exceptions to this such as paying the fee for the Confirmation Statement, changes to shareholding etc. meaning if you have bank charges going through when you haven’t made any sales, then your company is not dormant.

 

HMRC state that if you are not trading then you are dormant meaning if you have don’t have any trading income or expenses you are classed as dormant with them.

 

If you have any further questions about dormant companies then please let us know.

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Childcare Vouchers and Tax- Free Childcare

Childcare voucher schemes allow an employee to receive childcare vouchers in lieu of up to £55 per week of their wages and no tax or national insurance will be paid on this.  However, this scheme was closed to new applicants with effect from 4th October 2018 (although the scheme continues to run for successful applicants prior to that date, provided certain conditions are met).

The government has introduced a new childcare scheme, called Tax-Free Childcare.   This could provide up to £500 every 3 months, up to £2000 per year, to help with childcare costs for each child.  The funds must be used for approved childcare.  Therefore, the childcare provider must be signed up to the scheme.

To qualify for Tax-Free Childcare, the claimant and partner must be in work for 16 hours a week. Single claimants may also apply. It is possible to claim if on sick leave, annual leave or parental leave (although it is not possible to claim for the child for whom the parental leave is being taken).   If the claimant is not working but the partner is, then it may still be possible to qualify if in receipt of certain benefits or allowances.

Child(ren) are eligible up to 1st September following their 11th birthday.  Adopted children are also eligible, but foster children are not.  If a child is disabled, then it may be possible to qualify for Tax-Free Childcare for longer.

It is possible to receive Tax-Fee Childcare at the same time as receiving 30 hours free childcare if eligible for both.  However, it is not possible to receive Tax- Free Childcare at the same time as receiving Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, Universal Credit or childcare vouchers (if already in receipt of childcare vouchers prior to 4th October 2018).

The HMRC website has a “childcare calculator” link, designed to help work out whether Tax – Free Childcare is the best option, as opposed to other benefits.  It is also possible to apply online for Tax – Free Childcare, again through the HMRC website.

Please contact Tracy if you would like any further information on this.

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Personal Tax Accounts

HMRC are keen for individuals to set up their own personal tax account. It should take about 10 minutes and you will need to identify yourself, so have your NI number to hand and a copy of either your P60 or latest payslip. Once you have set yourself up you can use the account to;

  • check your Income Tax estimate and tax code
  • fill in, send and view a personal tax return
  • claim a tax refund
  • check and manage your tax credits
  • check your State Pension
  • track tax forms that you’ve submitted online
  • check or update your Marriage Allowance
  • tell HMRC about a change of address
  • check or update benefits you get from work, for example company car details and medical insurance
  • find your National Insurance number

If you are self employed you can use it to;

  • find out your Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR)
  • read any secure messages
  • file your Self Assessment
  • see and print your tax calculation
  • appeal a Self Assessment late filing penalty
  • tell HMRC you’re no longer self-employed
  • see your HMRC Annual Tax Summary online
  • apply to reduce your payments on account if your circumstances change
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When do I need to pay my Corporation Tax?

Annual Accounts and Corporation Tax

After the end of its financial year, your private limited company must prepare:

You need your accounts and tax return to meet deadlines for filing with Companies House and HM Revenue and Customs.

Action                                                                         Deadline

File first accounts with Companies House               21 months after the date you registered with Companies House

File annual accounts with Companies House           9 months after your company’s financial year ends

Pay Corporation Tax                                                      9 months and 1 day after your ‘accounting period for Corporation Tax ends

File a Company Tax Return                                         12 months after your accounting period for Corporation Tax endsFacebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail

Employment matters

Taking on employees can be a real headache and the legislation can be a mine field.  Have your employees all got up to date contracts?  Do you need some help and support?  Get in touch with us and we can introduce you to some of our excellent contacts.

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