Welcome to another web-update. We have a new Finance Act and new guides to Making VAT Digital. As HMRC have not put out anything useful on the topic of digital exclusion we have created our own guide.

Under the normal principles of VAT, placing reliance on a third party does not count as a reasonable excuse for a filing failure. What then for persons who are struggling to use their new Making Tax Digital for VAT functional compatible software and find that they must delegate to others? What if they are using software but they don't realise that it's not MVD enabled? What if you delegate to an agent who is also struggling? Reading through all the past decisions on appeals against penalties for failing to file online (see our guide below) I note that the judge involved (there was only one judge hearing these cases until a different one took a case last year), seems to hold the view that if you can't do the IT stuff then you must delegate. Tough if you can't afford to do that. If you are an agent and struggling then you need to find an alternate to assist you, and again tough luck if you can't afford that either.

The good news is that there are no late filing penalties for the first year you are in MVD, the bad news is that late payment penalties appear to continue to apply. If you are paying by direct debit you may have to make a manual override to avoid the late payment penalty. 

My top tip this week, if you are in MVD make sure you are operating the correct version of any software to allow the correct form of filing and that you know how to switch to the correct version. We know that not many people have signed up to use HMRC's MVD pilot. This is unsurprising as once you are in you are in and there is no turning back. 

If you have any tax queries please do try out our Virtual Tax Partner support portal at www.VtaxP.co.uk.

Enjoy the guides and updates and the news is below. 

Back soon

Nichola Ross Martin FCA CTA (Fellow) Tax Director


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

Quick news (freeview)

Stamp Duty Land Tax: non-UK resident surcharge consultation
The government has launched a consultation on plans to introduce a Stamp Duty Land tax (SDLT) surcharge for non-residents buying residential UK land and property.

What is the 2019/20 PAYE tax code?
What is the 2019/20 PAYE tax code? What is the PAYE code from 6 April 2019? What is the PAYE code for the year to 5 April 2020?

The loan charge: timescales, bankruptcy and insolvency
HMRC have once again updated their guidance on the loan charge being introduced in April 2019 and how to settle with HMRC.

Starting in Business? Start here
A collection of topical guides that are designed to explain which business vehicle to use, what taxes apply and more practical issues such as agreements and formalities.

Finance Act 2019
NEW: the Act received Royal Assent on 12 February 2019.

Making VAT Digital (freeview)

Making VAT Digital tool: who has to join?
Use our MVD tool to check whether you have to join, whether any exemptions apply and whether you are eligible for deferral.

Editor's Choice (subscribers) 

Making VAT Digital: who is digitally excluded?
NEW: in the absence of decent guidance from HMRC we have prepared this guide, this helpfully tracks appeals against online filing, explores the complex issues and links to the legislation.

Year-end tax planning
UPDATE: This is a useful checklist for pre-year end tax planning for corporate clients.

Tax Guides and Updates (subscribers) 

Finance Act 2018: tax update and rolling planner 2018-19 and Finance Act 2019: tax update & rolling planner 2019-20
Finance Bill 2019 received Royal Assent on 12 February 2019. We have updated our rolling planners for all of the changes introduced by Finance Act 2019.

Savings income: tax on interest
UPDATE: This useful guide to how savings income is taxed has been updated for 2019/20 tax rates and examples.

Making Taxes Digital: Toolkit for Accountants
UPDATE: catch up with the latest news here

Case Update (freeview)

Use of home claim excessive
In Sandra Annette Carter v HMRC [2018] TC6862 the FTT found that an accountant’s use of home claims were excessive. There was no evidence to show business use of three rooms, and the claim was reduced to one room.

The importance of establishing a taxpayer’s residency position
In J Charman v HMRC [2018] TC06899 a taxpayer was found to still be UK resident when he received a founders fee of £1.7m; he had started to cut ties with the UK but not yet made a decisive break.

VAT (subscribers) 

VAT Groups
UPDATE: This guide explains how VAT groups work, what the conditions are to join and how to form them.

CPD & Webinars

Private Client Update - January 2019

NEW: A webinar covering private client news, legislative changes and interesting cases from the past few months.

Budget 2018: subscriber guide & CPD
UPDATE: key announcements at a glance

See CPD for Lunch

Changes to our Terms and Conditions

Important changes to our T & Cs
UPDATED: our terms and conditions are short and we hope transparent. Please do take a minute to read through them.

Missed last time's Web-update?

Nichola's SME tax W-update 8 February 2019


  •  Even more tax planning updates for the year end and new tax year
  •  The Loan charge: another Spotlight and an explanation from HMRC
  •  VAT and diffferent sorts of chocolate brownies
  • and much more..

Come and join our Cloud

Subscribe (and UNLOCK the whole site) A single user annual subscription is £365 (+ VAT). 

What do you get?

  • We keep YOU up to date in SME tax.
  • FULL access to www.rossmartin.co.uk: your firm's personal TAX INTRANET containing over 3,500 actively maintained tax guides, briefings, toolkits and checklists.
  • Want to know more? Commission your own articles and checklists.
  • Structured CPD: our detailed SME tax updates "for Advisers Only" provide topical summaries and planning notes & our NEW webcasts provide you with structured CPD at your desk.
  • Regular client tax briefings: these cover the latest business and employment tax issues and are designed to assist you plan meetings and improve your client services.