Tax / Disguised employment: tax compliance for freelance workers

There has been press speculation that Chancellor Philip Hammond is considering, for the Autumn Budget, a raid on freelance workers in ‘disguised employment’ in the private sector. Mark Cawthron LLB CTA examines the current state of play

Tax / Dencher on VAT: is a lean-to an annex or extension?

In Litton & Thorner’s Community Hall [2017] TC 06101, the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) allowed the appeal against HMRC’s decision that zero-rating did not apply to the construction of a lean-to, which amounted to an annex to the original building. Stanley Dencher FCA CTA (Fellow) AIIT considers the ruling

Audit / FRC revises Practice Note 11: audit of charities in the UK

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has issued a revision of Practice Note 11: The audit of charities in the UK, which extends guidance in problems areas including risks of material misstatement, and streamlines other areas to ensure compliance with existing auditing standards

Tax / 78% of HMRC employees unhappy with pay

Just over one fifth (22%) of HMRC civil servants were happy with their pay and benefits in 2017, a drop of 2% compared to the previous year, despite the tax authority seeing a growth in satisfaction across all other areas of work, according to the latest Civil Service people study

Accounting / FRC to scrutinise Mitie’s 2016 financial statements

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has announced a further investigation into FTSE 250 outsourcing supplier Mitie Group, in relation to the preparation and approval of the financial statements for the year ended 31 March 2016, following on from its probe into Deloitte’s audit of the company, which has issued a string of profit warnings

Insight / Free download: using Big Data to prevent critical issues - ARI

Download ARI’s white paper, using Big Data to identify, predict and prevent critical issues, to help anyone running a company car fleet

Tax / OECD praises Jersey and Isle of Man on tax exchange information

In the aftermath of the release of the ‘Paradise Papers’, the OECD’s global forum on transparency and exchange of information for tax purposes has said it is ramping up efforts to tackle tax avoidance, while its latest peer review indicates Jersey and the Isle of Man are meeting transparency targets

Insight / Accountant’s PAYE failures add up to four-and-a-half year director’s ban

An ICAEW-qualified accountant from Liverpool has been disqualified from acting as a company director for four-and-a-half years, following the insolvency of his contractors payroll company which collapsed owing HMRC almost £400,000

Tax / ‘No fireworks’ in Wednesday’s Budget

The first autumn Budget for two decades, taking place on Wednesday, is widely predicted to be something of a damp squib, with the Chancellor concentrating on support for housing and the younger generation rather than significant tax changes

Insight / MPs call for action on gig economy tax avoidance

Two Parliamentary select committees have put forward a draft bill designed to close loopholes in the gig economy, which MPs say allow companies to use bogus ‘self-employment’ status as a route to cheap labour and tax avoidance

Tax / HMRC study finds tax confusion around sharing economy

Around 11% of the working age population is involved in the sharing economy, creating an estimated total gross income of £8bn annually, but one in ten of those earning over the personal allowance threshold may not be reporting their tax obligations, research commissioned by HMRC has found

Technical Alerts

17 Nov 2017

Insight / Christmas presents: dealing with possible bribe dilemmas

Bob Patchett from Croner-i Human Resources outlines the implications of the Bribery Act 2010 and considers when Christmas gift giving in the workplace might cross the line from goodwill to bribery

Tax / One in five businesses borderline for VAT actively avoid registration

One in five businesses which are operating just below the VAT registration limit admit to taking deliberate action to remain under the threshold, even if it means turning down work, according to research commissioned by HMRC

Tax / US tax reform passes through House in milestone vote

The US House of Representatives has passed a bill opening the way to a major reform to the US tax code, including slashing the corporate tax rate, in a milestone vote which means the focus for President Donald Trump’s promised tax overhaul now moves to the Senate

Tax / Requirement to Correct tax due on offshore assets

HMRC has issued guidance on how to comply with new Requirement to Correct rules designed to clamp down on individuals with undeclared offshore assets and highlighting the penalties for non-compliance

Accounting / FRC to review impact of IFRS 9 and IFRS 15

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has announced the topics and areas it will focus on over the next year, which include AIM quoted company reports, the impact of new IFRS standards for revenue and financial instruments, and the effect of Brexit on companies’ disclosures

Insight / Takeaway fraudster sentenced for £117K VAT scam

An Indian restaurant owner has been given a two-year suspended jail sentence for stealing the £117,000 VAT he charged his customers for takeaway meals

Insight / People in the news: FRP Advisory, Moore Thompson, Watson Buckle

In this week’s moves and appointments roundup, FRP Advisory promotes team members across its Essex and Birmingham offices, Moore Thompson appoints five members including three trainees across its offices, two trainees join Watson Buckle

Tax / Car tax evasion triples since paper disc abolished

The abolition of the paper car tax disc has resulted in a tripling of the number of drivers evading car tax and now represents a loss to the Treasury of around £107m a year, according to statistics from the Department for Transport (DfT) and the DVLA

Insight / ICAEW highlights ‘personal finance director’ opportunities

ICAEW is launching an initiative next month in a bid to encourage chartered accountants to play a wider role as ‘personal finance director’, by providing lifetime wealth planning to help SME owners/managers and their families better manage their personal financial and investment affairs

Insight / Eight out of 10 millennials reject Big Four careers

A third (33%) of millennials at small-medium sized accounting firms want to remain within this sector while 21% wish to pursue careers at the Big Four, challenging the assumption that smaller firms are a stepping stone to larger employers, according to ACCA’s recent global study

Technical Alerts

16 Nov 2017

Tax / Kavanagh: De Silva case brings clarity over schemes involving partnerships

The Supreme Court’s verdict in the De Silva tax dispute could have far-reaching consequences for tax schemes involving partnerships says UK Tax Consulting director John Kavanagh

Tax / Supreme Court rules on validity of claim in De Silva case

HMRC should be relieved with the Supreme Court’s decision in the De Silva case as if the outcome had been different the tax authority may have had to repay the many accelerated payments already collected, says Michael Avient, consultant at JS&Co

Tax / Glassey: Paradise Papers put spotlight on offshore financial centres

The revelations and hyperbole around the Paradise Paper undermine the value of using offshore financial centres, where levels of transparency are arguably no worse than elsewhere in the world, despite the efforts of governments to demand more openness, argues Will Glassey, partner at Mayer Brown

Insight / Insolvency Service cooks up ban for failed kitchen fitting director

The director of a Liverpool kitchen fitting company has been disqualified for seven years after failing to keep adequate accounting records or pay some £138,000 in tax, following an investigation by the Insolvency Service

Insight / 92% of European businesses not ready for GDPR

With just over six months to go until the EU’s general data protection regulation (GDPR) becomes law, just 8% of businesses across Europe report they are prepared for the new measures, which include provision for fines of face fines of up to €20m for failure to comply, according to research from RSM

Tax / HMRC loses further tour operator VAT case at FTT

HMRC has lost its appeal at First Tier Tribunal (FTT) over its claim that an online ‘bedbank’ supplier of hotel rooms via a bookings website should have been paying VAT on its services, after arguing that in this particular instance foreign law applied

Tax / HMRC’s tax-free childcare scheme delayed

The full rollout of tax-free childcare has been delayed to March 2018 with the scheme opening to parents whose youngest child is under six from next week, as part of a phased approach to rolling out the online service, which has experienced teething problems

Tax / HMRC wins landmark De Silva film scheme case in Supreme Court

A £50m tax avoidance scheme which used reliefs put in place to encourage film productions has been defeated in the Supreme Court

Technical Alerts