Rules changed on Entrepreneurs’ Relief… again

In May we reported concerns that changes to the rules on Entrepreneurs’ Relief would lead to retrospective taxation. The Government now appears to have taken note of these concerns and amended the Finance Bill 2016 to remove the possibility of retrospective taxation – at least in some circumstances.

Entrepreneurs’ Relief was introduced by the Treasury as an incentive to entrepreneurship and business growth.

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Making Tax Digital will require businesses to use “designated software packages”

The Financial Secretary to the Treasury, David Gauke MP, has confirmed in a letter to the Treasury Select Committee that HM Revenue & Customs plans to require businesses to make quarterly tax returns using “designated software packages” as part of its Making Tax Digital (MTD) initiative.

Previously, it was understood that businesses would be able to use their own choice of software package for their tax returns and this could include MS Excel.

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Changes afoot at Companies House

The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 provides for a range of measures which will affect the information you give to Companies House.

A number of the more significant measures in the Act came into effect on 30 June. These include the introduction of confirmation statements, the requirement for information on people with significant control (PSCs) to be filed with Companies House,

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Brexit: What is next?

On 23 June 2016 the UK public spoke and decided to take the country out of the EU. As the UK begins the process of leaving the EU, many businesses will be wondering what is around the corner.

The first thing is that the UK is unlikely to leave the EU within the next two years and a final settlement may take longer,

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Rent a Room limit increased by £3,250

From 6 April 2016, the annual Rent a Room limit increased from £4,250 to £7,500 for the 2016/17 tax year.

The Rent a Room scheme allows owner occupiers and tenants to receive tax-free rental income if they provide furnished accommodation in their main home.

Automatic exemption from rental income occurs if the gross receipts are less than £7,500 or £3,750 per person if the income is shared.

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3,000 serious tax evasion investigations conducted by HMRC in a year

According to the latest figures around 3,000 suspected cases of serious tax evasion were referred by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for specialist investigation for the second year running last year.

This is an eight per cent increase in the number of cases handed over to the Revenue’s dedicated evasion referral team by its local offices. In total 2,972 referrals were made in 2015/16,

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SMEs warned to take care when choosing lenders

The National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers (NACFB) is advising SMEs to read the fine print when seeking finance after its number of rejected lenders skyrocketed in the last two years.

A growing number of so-called ‘bandwagon’ lenders and ‘flatpack’ finance providers have entered the commercial finance market and are posing a significant threat to SMEs who are seeking investment for growth, according to the NACFB.

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Tax Evasion Criminal Sanctions

The Queen’s Speech in May saw the government announce its intention to bring the proposed Criminal Finance Bill before Parliament that will hold UK companies responsible for failing to prevent their staff facilitating tax evasion anywhere in the world by creating a new criminal offence for corporations that do not take action.

The announcement follows the recent publication of the Panama Papers and increased public concern over tax evasion.

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Reliefs on Employee Travel Expenses curtailed

Since the start of the new financial year on 6 April 2016, employment intermediaries have had to consider whether a person is subject to supervision, direction or control (SDC) in their work when deciding whether travel from home to work and subsistence expenses can be paid to workers.

Many Managed Service Company (MSC) providers have used reliefs on these expenses to reduce workers’ income tax and National Insurance contributions.

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