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Latest News From CKLG Accountants

Changes to UK Business rates

February 26, 2015

The UK Goverment have made changes to the rules governing business rates and how you appeal against business rates that you feel to be incorrect.

The rates you pay on your non-domestic (eg business) property depend on its ‘rateable value’. This is calculated by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). Any appeal against the rateable value of a property submitted after 1 April 2015 will not be backdated to the period 2010 to 2015.

If you are unhappy about the rateable value of your business property you need to get your appeal in by 31 March 2015. If you appeal later, and the rateable value of your property is reduced following the appeal, your business will not receive the potential refunds of business rates for periods up to 31 March 2015.

If you have any concerns about the rateable value of your business property, please contact us for advice.

 How to appeal against business rates


Company car tax changes April 2015

February 18, 2015

Do you have a company car? You may want to reconsider whether or not you keep your company car before the beginning of the new tax year (6 April 2015), when the tax charges for using any type company car will increase. These increases also affect electric cars which will be taxed at 5% of their list price.
 
Cars with higher CO2 emissions will be taxed far more harshly in future years, with many more cars attracting the maximum taxable benefit of 37% of the list price. For example a petrol car with CO2 emissions of 142g/km, will be taxed on 21% of its list price in 2014/15, but in 2017/18 the same car will be taxed on 37% of its list price.  

We can help you work out the future tax due on your current company car, please contact us for more details.

Finance Bill 2015 legislation – see p 38 for car rates & bands


Junior ISA Investments

February 17, 2015

The end of the tax year on 5 April 2015 is the deadline for investing in ISAs for 2014/15.  These are handy tax-free savings accounts which are now also available for children in the form of Junior ISAs.
 
A Junior ISA can be opened for any child under the age of 18 who lives in the UK and doesn’t already have child trust fund (CTF) account. The investment limit for a junior ISA is £4,000 for 2014/15, which will rise to £4,080 for 2015/16. Any unused investment limit cannot be carried forward.
 
Anyone can deposit funds into the child’s Junior ISA, including the child’s parents, with no tax implications for donor of the funds. From 6 April 2015 funds from the child’s CTF account can be transferred into their Junior ISA.
 
 

Experienced audit manager, Cambridge

February 17, 2015

We are looking for an ACCA/ACA qualified individual, who has at least 2 years post-qualification experience, to become a permanent addition to our team. Ideally the candidate would be available to start during May or June this year.

Read more.. 


UK Pension rules relaxed

February 10, 2015

A number of changes are being made to UK pension tax rules to reflect the greater flexibility individuals will have to access their pension savings from age 55.
 
From 6 April 2015 anyone with a defined contribution (money purchase) pension scheme will be entitled to extract all their savings from their pension scheme once they reach age 55. 
 
However, it is important that you consider and fully understand the tax implications if you decide to extract your pension early.  Under flexi-access drawdown, the first 25% of your pension savings can be taken as a tax-free payment, but the rest will be taxed at your marginal tax rate for the year you extract those funds. Once you start to take money from your pension fund you will face restrictions on what you can put back in as contributions.
 
If you are thinking about accessing savings from your pension scheme when you reach age 55, please talk to us to discuss the tax implications before you make your decision. 
 
For more information - Pensions flexibility guidance 
 

Year End Tax Guide 2014/2015

February 3, 2015

With the 2014/ 15 tax year about to end, now is the perfect time to consider tax planning opportunities. Below is a check list to think about before April 2015.

  • Have you used this year's increased ISA allowances?
  • Have you maximised your pension contributions and renewed your life time allowances?
  • Have you reviewed your Capital Gains Tax position and utilised your annual exemption for the year?
  • If you are a higher rate taxpayer, have you considered making a gift aid donation of pension contributions to reduce the impact of the 45% rate?
  • If your income is likely to exceed £100,000, have you considered ways to mitigate the potential loss or reduction of your personal allowance?
  • If you are married or in a civil partnership, have you considered transferring income producing assets to the lower earner to utilise their personal allowance and lower tax rates?
  • Have you reviewed your Inheritance Tax (IHT) position and utilised your annual exemption for the year?  Have you considered taking advantage of other IHT exemptions for gifts within your lifetime? 

If you would like to discuss these and any other tax planning opportunities available to you, our team would be delighted to hear from you.

Click here to download our short guide to rates, reliefs and allowences available for use by 5 April 2015 


Auto-enrolment trigger

February 3, 2015

If a worker’s earnings are below the earnings trigger point for auto-enrolment that person does not have to be including in auto-enrolment. The earnings trigger point for all tax years up to and including 2014/15 was equivalent to the personal allowance for that tax year.  

However, for 2015/16 the trigger point for auto-enrolment is being frozen at £10,000, it will not move up to £10,600 in line with the personal allowance. This means you need to be careful about excluding low-paid workers from those who you enrol in the company pension scheme.
 

VAT returns benchmarked

January 27, 2015

HMRC are currently writing to around 7500 furniture retailers or car mechanics asking them to check the figures in boxes 6 and 7 on their VAT returns. The letter includes the standard range of VAT mark-up ratios for the relevant business sector and asks the business to calculate their own VAT mark-up to compare to the standard ratios.

If you receive one of those letters, don’t panic. HMRC do not believe your VAT return is wrong, they are just asking you to double check the reported figures. We can help you with that.

HMRC VAT benchmarking


Fit for work

January 20, 2015

If any of your employees have been off work sick for 28 days or more, or expect to be sick for that time, you can use the Government sponsored “Fit for Work” service to help them get back to work. You can pay for up to £500 of medical treatment for the sick employee, as recommended by an occupational health assessment provided through Fit for Work, or by any other occupational health professional.

The cost of that treatment will generally be free of tax and NI, but it must meet a number of conditions. We can help you check if the treatment will qualify for this new tax exemption.   
 
 

Self-Assessment Tax Return Deadline

January 6, 2015

2014/ 2015Self-Assessment Tax Return  
Deadline 31 January 2015  

If you are required to submit a self-assessment tax return to HMRC for the 2013/ 2014 tax year, please be reminded that the deadline is midnight 31 January 2015. Late submissions will result in a £100 fine, so please don't leave your tax return to the last minute.  

If you have any questions or require any assistance completing your tax return, please contact us on 01223 810 100.


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