When do I need to fill in a Tax Return?

You may be wondering why you have been sent a notice to complete a tax return, or whether or not you should be completing one for the year.

The list below explains when you need to prepare a self assessment, but should you need any further information, please do not hesitate to contact us; 

  • You were self employed at any point of the tax year (runs from 6 April to 5 April)
  • You received more than £2,500 of un-taxed income for renting property or from un-taxed savings
  • You received dividend income of over £5,000 in the year
  • Your investment income was £10,000 or more before tax
  • You made a profit from selling a second property or shares and owe Capital Gains Tax
  • You are a company director
  • Your income was more than £50,000 and you or your partner claimed Child benefit
  • You received overseas income and need to pay UK tax on it
  • You lived abroad and need to pay tax on your UK income
  • Your income was over £100,000 for the tax year
  • You were trustee of a trust or registered pension scheme
  • If HMRC have issued you with a tax return, you must still complete and submit it

If you would like any advice on whether or not you should be completing a Self Assessment, or would like help completing and filing a tax return, please call 0845 303 1144 or email info@coopercurtis.co.uk 

Post by Caroline

Post by Caroline

 Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published.

The Not so 'Trivial' Benefits Exemption

Tax-free Trivial Benefits

A little known and underused tax free perk is the trivial benefits exemption.

A benefit provided to an employee is classed as a trivial benefit and therefore tax free for not only them, but a tax deduction for the employer too, provided that;

  1. It is less than £50, if given as a voucher it is non cash transferable,
  2. It is NOT a reward for services,
  3. And, it isn't included in the terms of an employee’s contract.

Examples

Trivial benefits could include, a gift voucher, a bunch of flowers, a meal out for employees under £50 per head.

To avoid the reward for service rule, the benefits could be given for a birthday, or a turkey or bottle of wine at Christmas, the birth of a child or a bereavement.

There is no limit to employees!

HMRC’s legislation does not state how many times per year you can give a trivial benefit to your employees. But be wise! Obviously a £50 gift every working day of the year would ring HMRC's alarm bells so we would advise that any trivial benefits made in the year are made as a gesture rather than a frequent payment.

Does this apply to company directors too?

Yes it does! To limit company directors taking advantage of this tax freebie, HMRC will allow trivial benefits provided to directors up to a value of £300 per year. So that’s a payment up to £50 once every two months. If your spouse is also a director that is another saving of £300 and a potential tax saving of £335 if both higher rate tax payers!

For more information on trivial benefits and other tax saving opportunities, contact Cooper Curtis on 0845 303 1144 or email info@coopercurtis.co.uk

POST BY CAROLINE

POST BY CAROLINE

Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published.

Are you looking to save money through a Childcare voucher Scheme?

A question we get often asked by our recruitment director clients' is; 

'Should I be operating a childcare voucher scheme through my own limited company?'

The facts.

An employer operating the Childcare voucher scheme will allow each parent paying basic rate tax, up to £55 per week or £243 per month tax free childcare for children up to the age of 15. Higher rate tax paying parents are allowed up to £28 p/wk and £124 p/mth respectively. Any vouchers exceeding this amount are subject to tax and NI and must be included on a form P11D. 

So, many limited company directors who employ their spouses, have use of twice the amount of vouchers. 

It works by having either a deduction in your salary (via a salary sacrifice) saving tax &NI, or having an addition to your salary, and having it as a company expense. 

Care needs to be taken when coming to a decision on which option to take. 

How it's done.

  • Your childcare provider must be registered with the OFSTED scheme. You can find out this information from the OFSTED website.

  • Set your scheme up IN YOUR COMPANY'S NAME through HMRC or pay for a scheme administrator such as Kiddivouchers or Edenred to do this for you.  

  • If you choose to use a scheme administrator they will charge commission on supplying the vouchers for this but is allowed as an additional business expense. (Yet more tax savings!) 

  • Payments MUST be made through the company bank.

The future of the Childcare Voucher Scheme.

The childcare voucher scheme is running out and no further parents can apply to join the scheme after April 2018.

You may already be aware of the Government's new 'Tax-free childcare' scheme which is being introduced from 2017. It will then be necessary for parents to decide which scheme would be more beneficial to them. There are more strict conditions with this new scheme. For example, both parents must be working and earning over a certain amount to enter the scheme.

How it works under the new 'Tax-free childcare' for every 80p paid into the scheme, the government will top this up by 20p up to a total of £10,000. For parents with lower childcare costs such as a couple of days a week, the current childcare voucher scheme may be more beneficial to them.

To conclude, in my opinion it is beneficial to enter the scheme and operate the vouchers through your limited company as long as your administration costs stay low and the costs don't outweigh the benefit. We will see what happens when the new 'Tax-free childcare' scheme is introduced next year and whether my view will change.

post by caroline

post by caroline

If you would like further information on how to set up a childcare scheme through your own limited company, please contact Cooper Curtis on 0845 303 1144 or email info@coopercurtis.co.uk.

Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published

National Minimum Wage change to age bands from 1st October

From the 1st October 2016, the national minimum wage rates for the different age bands and for apprentices are increasing.

The new rates from next month will be as follows;

From October 2016 - April 2017

Adult rate (21+)NLW (25+)        £7.20

 Adult Rate (21-24)                    £6.95

YDR (18-20)                               £5.55

16-17 Yr Old Rate                       £4.00

Apprentice Rate                        £3.40

 

Please ensure your current payroll system is compliant in advance of the changes.

POST BY CAROLINE

POST BY CAROLINE

 

If you would like more information on the minimum wage requirements or have a payroll query, please contact us on 0845 303 1144 or email info@coopercurtis.co.uk. 

Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published

Employment Allowance is £3,000 from April, but can you still claim?

The allowance gives relief from Employer NIC up to £2,000 rising to £3,000 from April, and can be claimed at the start of the tax year.

However....

This allowance will not be available to to employers if they,

  • Employ someone for household work ie Nanny, gardener, cleaner
  • Already claim the allowance through a connect company or charity
  • Are a public authority such as a council
  • Carry out functions either wholly or mainly of a public nature such as NHS Services, debt collection for a government department, GP . This doesn't include supplying IT services, providing security or cleaning for a government building. 

Further restriction for one director only companies...

The July Budget (and again in consultation in January 2016) announced that from 2016, employers who are director only companies will be excluded from claiming the employers allowance.

If you are a one director company and wish to take on a member of staff, they must be paid over £8,060 in order to claim the allowance.

 

For further information on any topics covered in our blogs, or if you would like to speak to us about our pro-active Accountancy & Tax Services, contact Brian or Caroline on 0845 303 1144 for a chat or email info@coopercurtis.co.uk. 

Cooper Curtis Accountants have offices in WarwickBirmingham and Manchester

Knowledge - Support - Succeed

Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published.

Changes to reporting business expenses from April 2016

HMRC have confirmed that all dispensations agreed until 5 April 2016 will not apply after this date and there will be no requirement to report business expenses on a form P11D.

In the current year, employers can request a dispensation from HMRC to cover all genuine business expenses such as travel, business entertainment, and company car fuel avoiding the requirement to declare these on a P11D.

These changes will ease the burden of employers from the strict July deadline and hefty penalties issued for non-compliance.

We would recommend that you continue to have a system in place for checking that all claims made as a deduction are valid business expenses. 

All other non-allowable expenses and benefits in kind will be subject to tax and National Insurance as normal and continue to be reported on a form P11D. Any expenses or benefits provided under salary sacrifice arrangement will need to be paid after deducting tax and National Insurance. 

For more information on the above or advice on getting better controls in place for your business please call Cooper Curtis Accountants on 0845 303 1144.

 

Cooper Curtis is different in that they specialise in growing successful recruitment businesses through their Accounting Advisory service.

Contact Brian or Caroline on 0845 303 1144 for a chat to see how we can help you raise your game. 

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Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published. 

 

Save up to £212 with the marriage allowance!

If your spouse has some unused personal allowance, if you haven't done so already, you may be able to elect to transfer these and add them to your own personal allowance through an adjustment to your tax code. 

So long as;

- Both spouses are born after 6 April 1935

- One spouse has an annual income between £10,601 and £42,385

- The other spouse has income below £10,600 for the year to 5 April 2016. Or £11,000 from 6 April 2016.

If all the above apply, you should be eligible for this tax break. 

Speak to us for further information on applying for the marriage allowance. 

For further information on any topics covered in our blogs, or if you would like to speak to us about our pro-active Accountancy & Tax services, contact Brian or Caroline on 0845 303 1144 for a chat or email info@coopercurtis.co.uk. 

Cooper Curtis Accountants have offices in Warwickshire, Birmingham and Manchester. 

Knowledge - Support - Succeed

Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published.

 

How will dividends be taxed from April 2016?

From April 2016, the way dividends are taxed is changing. 

The 10% notional tax credit is being scrapped and there is now a £5,000 dividend tax free allowance per tax year.

After that, the tax rates are 7.5% up to the basic rate band (£5K tax free allowance forms part of this), then 32% for higher rate and 38.1% for additional higher rate.

Note, the new 'savings allowance' from April is in addition to the dividend allowance but is not available to use against dividend income, only interest.

Putting this into context, if you take an employment income of £8,000 and take out company dividends of £40,000, this will mean you will pay around £1,390 more in tax than before.

Should you be taking any action? 

If you have enough reserves held in the company, consider whether it would be beneficial paying a large dividend before April 2016.

Consider changing your year end to March if you haven't already, this way you can keep track of the dividends you are taking and this will make it easier to tie in to the year end. 

You should speak with your advisor on possible ways to mitigate this tax before April. 

 

To discuss how the new dividend regime will affect your business or to find out more about our pro-active services, contact Brian or Caroline on 0845 303 1144 for a chat or email info@coopercurtis.co.uk

Cooper Curtis Accountants have offices in Warwickshire, Birmingham and Manchester

Knowledge - Support - Succeed

Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published.

 

 

Tax Return Checklist

As the tax return season is upon us, we have compiled a checklist for you to use when gathering information...

Please note, all our content is for general guideline only, every case is different and we would recommend speaking to us before taking any action as a result of the content. The content was correct at the time it was published.