This time we have one of our regular SME tax update specials.  We also have some very interesting developments in devolving taxes and of course, there is much more if you read on.

As you may be aware, Northern Ireland is set to reduce its corporation tax rate to just 12.5% in 2018, if you are running a business in the province, InvestNI will give you cash for taking on employees.  Meanwhile Wales, like Scotland before it is to introduce a new form of stamp duty: a land transaction tax. Moving further North, the Scottish government is currently considering its options for its devolved tax system. A lot of accountants are quite rightly concerned about what Making Tax Digital will do to their practice models, however given the current pace of change in devolving taxes and also factoring Brexit into the equation, your clients will continue to need hands on support from their human advisers for some time yet.

We have seen some activity from HMRC in raising penalties under the particularly draconian 'unauthorised payment charge' provisions: in short, if you have a SIPP, watch what you do with your funds. We have a case summary and new guide for subscribers this time.

As mentioned we have our SME quarterly update this time.

I mentioned last week that we are beta testing our new Virtual Tax Partner® technical support portal, we have had an enthusiastic response. if you have a query come and try that out. If you are a subscriber to www.rossmartin.co.uk use the new portal for free quick queries.

Enjoy the guides and updates and the news is below. 

Back soon

Nichola Ross Martin FCA Tax Director


Your Virtual Tax Partner®: online PRACTICAL support for accountants & tax advisers BY accountants & tax advisers

Quick news (freeview)

Northern Ireland Corporation Tax
HMRC have released draft guidance on the new Northern Ireland corporation tax regime which paves the way for a lower rate of corporation tax than the rest of the UK.

Welsh Land Transaction Tax
Wales is to introduce the Land Transaction Tax (LTT) in April 2018, its own version of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT).

Scottish tax: a new approach
Last chance to respond: the Scottish government is calling for view on developing a Scottish approach to taxation. By 30th September.

Case Update (freeview)

Our pick of recent case decisions.

Careless error leads to pensions charge
In Peter Browne v HMRC [2016] TC05331 a careless delay in transferring funds between pension plans led to an unauthorised payment charge for the taxpayer.

Incomplete invoices & input VAT recovery: EU cases
In the two recent cases of Barlis and Senatex the European Court (CJEU) defended the taxpayers' right to recover input VAT even where invoices were not complete.

Another HMRC win on avoidance schemes
In Andrew Chappell v HMRC [2016] EWCA Civ 809  HMRC recorded their 10th successive victory on tax avoidance schemes promoted by NT Advisors, bringing the total tax protected to over £900m.

Local Authority trade waste collections & VAT
In The Durham Company Ltd (t/a Max Recycle) v HMRC & Anor [2016] UKUT 417 the Upper Tribunal found that supplies of commercial waste collection services by Local Authorities can be exempt from VAT. 

Practical Tax Guides and Updates (subscribers)

Small Company Tax: What’s New? Sep/Oct 2016
NEW: our summary of the most important recent developments for SMEs and OMBs.

Self Employed update Sept/Oct 2016
Our summary of important developments for self employed taxpayers,

Client Notification (offshore bank accounts and investments)
NEW: Burden or marketing opportunity? Accountants and IFAs have new duty to notify their clients that HMRC has details of their assets from next year.

SDLT: Leases
NEW: The SDLT treatment of leases is notoriously complex: this guide provides an overview of the rules.

Pensions: unauthorised payment charges
NEW: A summary of the (rather nasty) tax implications of a pension scheme making an unauthorised payment.

Negligible value claims
UPDATED: case of Dyer v HMRC added which illustrates that shares must have value when acquired.

Editor's Choice

How to pay a dividend: step-by-step guide
NEW: A step-by-step guide for sole director/shareholder companies.

Extracting profits (self employed)
Cash basis? Simplified reporting? Employing the spouse? What about private use and assets? This guide takes a detailed look tax savings for the self employed.

Buy to let: incorporation
Tax implications when incorporating a property business: CGT, SDLT, VAT and ATED.

Directors: tax planning toolkit for 2016/17
Our comprehensive guide to tax planning with links to guides on all issues affecting directors.

Directors: creating an office at home or in the garden
Many company owners work from home, this note looks at how you may obtain tax relief on the cost of converting the spare room, or building a deluxe summerhouse to serve as an office in the garden. 

Virtual Tax Partner® support

Click here to ask a technical query. You will have the option to try out our new beta version.

Consultation watch (freeview)

Last chance to respond: simplification or complication?  The Office of Tax Simplification's two consultations for two new trading entities require responses by 30 September 2016: 

  • 'Lookthrough' taxation: shareholders being taxed directly on the company’s profits instead of the company paying corporation tax. Read more...
  • A ‘sole enterprise protected assets’ vehicle (SPA) which would provide the self-employed with limited liability for their main home. Read more...

Making Tax Digital: the Index
What's new in MTD. All the consultations with summaries of the questions so you can cut and paste and share your views with HMRC.

Missed last time's update?

Nichola's SME Tax Update 22 September

With a special focus on Directors and also features:

  • RTI confusion
  • Finance Act 2016: contents and Top Ten measures for SMEs
  • Personal Service Company contractors
  • Consultations on Museums & galleries tax relief and Pensions Advice Allowance

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