Following its Digital by default consultation, HMRC has decided that it will not be increasing the amount of XBRL tagging required in company accounts after all. 

In February 2012 HMRC published a summary of responses to last summer’s 'Digital by default' consultation. HMRC had asked for views on increasing the amount of XBRL tagging when the transitional period or “soft landing” following the 2011 introduction of XBRL expires at the end of March 2013. Respondents agreed that there should be no major extension of the list of specified information from April 2013. HMRC has accepted this view and says that the tagging requirement will not change in April 2013.

The move is sure to be welcomed by companies and their accountants. The move to XBRL has meant that many firms of accountants are forced into running a variety of hybrid software packages in order to comply with  different compliance requirements. The software industry is a long way from offering coherent and cost effective solutions for all. Many popular packages will file accounts for corporation tax but not for Companies House. In August 2011 Companies House dropped its plans for compulsory XBRL tagging in 2013 which means that paper filing is still possible for companies.

HMRC says that it is working with software suppliers and other representatives to make limited changes to the list from autumn 2013. There will be a single requirement for detailed profit and loss account tags, whether appearing in the accounts or the tax computations, and an improvement to the structure of the computations tags. Beyond that, there will be no major change without full consultation.

Source: HMRC: XBRL tagging