HMRC points towards a new penalty system

HMRCs vision to digitalise the UK tax system is well underway. Businesses and landlords will be required to use commercial software to maintain their records and to update the taxman quarterly, starting with VAT. A recent survey has revealed that 40 per cent of small businesses are lo

‘New powers’ for HMRC

HM Revenue and Customs is being given “unprecedented powers” to take extra tax from someone’s pay packet the moment it believes they aren’t paying enough, post-Budget reports have revealed. Current rules mean the taxman must recoup unpaid cash the following year. But a report in the D

Unsure about R&D tax relief? You’re not the only one!

Research & Development (R&D) tax relief experts Catax have carried out a survey to find out what SME owners, directors and senior managers know about this valuable form of tax relief. The Catax survey uncovered some surprising results: The survey revealed that over half of UK

Why auto-enrolment is not ‘job done’

Former pension’s minister Sir Steve Webb has fired a strong warning to companies that they could be sued for hundreds of millions of pounds if they continue to provide “the bare minimum” in pensions for their workers. His message, in an article in the Daily Telegraph is stark. He says

Are you aware of small business rate relief changes?

The overhaul of business rates which came into play earlier this year created a host of worrying headlines. Stories of companies facing closure as the result of large hikes to their bill – a whopping 1,361 per cent according to one report in Lancashire – were commonplace. But th

Auto Enrolment – dismissing the myths

Auto Enrolment has been slowly introduced over the last five years for employers.  As from this month we are, at last, getting towards the end of the “staging” period, which has caused headaches for employers up and down the country. All new employers must now set up a pension scheme

Raising a glass to a great event!

It is one of the highlights of the year and a firm favourite on the Lancashire social calendar. The first Oyster Festival at Guy’s Thatched Hamlet in Billsborrow took place back in 1991. Since then Guy’s and the Wilkinson family that run the venue, have welcomed many national and inte

Calls for more certainty get louder

Lack of certainty around payment practices, regulation and post-Brexit planning will have a knock-on effect on the UK’s small businesses, according to the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). Its verdict on the challenges facing our SMEs could not be clearer: “Small

First deal for powerhouse fund

The new £400 million Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF) highlighted in last month’s WNJ newsletter is up and running in Lancashire with its first deal in the county. The fund has completed a £250,000 investment in an SME set up six years ago.The loan will allow the company to

Build a strategy as buy-to-let tax changes take hold

The government’s squeeze on residential buy-to-let landlords continues, so it is important they are aware of the myriad of changes and what they can do to mitigate the effects. For one thing, from April this year tax relief on interest in property businesses – and this includes single

Late payments cost UK SMEs more than £2bn

The growing issue of late payments and its impact on small businesses has been underlined yet again by a new report showing it is costing the UK’s smaller companies more than £2bn a year. Those SMEs are feeling the pinch, relying on overdrafts, paying staff late and fearing for their

Auto enrolment hits the 8m mark

More than eight million employees have signed up for a workplace pension since the launch of automatic enrolment, according to the latest official figures. Pensions minister Guy Opperman has described reaching this latest milestone as “a formidable achievement”. When the system was la