Law and regulation

Tax / Government publishes Bill for post-Brexit customs regime

The government has published the Taxation (Cross-Border Trade) Bill to allow it to establish a standalone customs regime, and ensure that VAT and excise legislation operates effectively, following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU

Audit / Big Four could face £10m-plus regulatory fines

Big Four firms should face fines of £10m or more for poor quality audit work, while individual accountants guilty of dishonesty could be given 10-year bans, according to an independent review of the Financial Reporting Council’s (FRC) enforcement sanctions, which also calls for a greater focus on non-financial penalties

Tax / Deliveroo wins case confirming riders are self-employed

In the latest challenge to the employment status of ‘gig economy’ workers, Deliveroo riders have been ruled self-employed by labour law body the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC), in a move which runs counter to other recent rulings

Insight / Accountant banned for hiding commission on tax avoidance schemes

An accountant from Stevenage has been excluded from ICAEW membership, fined £8,000 and ordered to pay costs of £47,000 after a disciplinary tribunal found he had concealed from clients the commission received from recommending tax avoidance schemes and had ‘blatantly disregarded his duties’

Tax / Uber loses appeal on payment of national minimum wage to drivers

In a blow to one of the largest operators in the gig economy, Uber has lost its appeal to overturn last year’s Employment Tribunal decision that its drivers should be paid the national minimum wage and holiday pay, which could result in a hike in NICs payments for the company

Insight / Mercer & Hole launches expert witness service

Mercer & Hole Chartered Accountants has set up an expert witness service, to provide support giving evidence and opinion on business valuation, professional negligence and divorce cases

Accounting / Expert witnesses: what you need to know

Being an expert witness requires expertise and judgment whether in a complex financial accounting case or a contract dispute. Dr Chris Pamplin of the UK Register of Expert Witnesses considers the role of the expert witness, focusing on the key attributes of an expert witness from specialist knowledge to a deep understanding of technical terms and issues

Insight / Development updates: November 2017

Professional development news roundup including, Baldwins swoops on Campbell Dallas, profits up at Moore Stephens, ICAEW loses reserved legal services bid, co-op group could not use early conciliation certificate

Insight / Charity Commission seeks views on insider fraud

The Charity Commission is launching a campaign to reduce insider fraud committed by volunteers, employees or trustees, and is seeking information from finance professionals and others who may have knowledge of dealing with the issues involved

Insight / Charity Commission issues alert on military charities

The Charity Commission has issued an alert to charities that support veterans, after its review of a sample of military charities set up since 2007 revealed concerns around fundraising, financial controls and safeguarding

Insight / Payment transparency reporting for large business goes online

Under new rules to force companies to pay invoices more quickly and speed up payment to suppliers, the government has launched an online reporting service for large businesses who have to to publish mandatory business payment practices reports twice a year online

Insight / Fundraising regulator to tighten up data protection rules

The Fundraising Regulator is to consult on strengthening the sections on data protection with its code of fundraising practice, in light of the upcoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) legislation, which comes into effect next year, and recent concerns about how charities use data on donors

Accounting / DfID introduces open book accounting to tackle supplier profiteering

The Department for International Development (DfID) has announced reforms of its work with contracted suppliers in a bid to clamp down on the risk of profiteering, excessive charges and unscrupulous practices

Insight / Ex-FTSE 250 oil company execs in court over £299m fraud

The former chief executive officer (CEO) and ex-chief operating officer (COO) of the collapsed FTSE 250 oil and gas exploration company Afren are due in court today to face money laundering and fraud charges relating to over $400m (£299m) of Nigerian business deals

Insight / Companies must consider human rights under Criminal Finances Act

As the Criminal Finances Act becomes law this month, law firm Hodge Jones & Allen warns that companies will have to consider corporate human rights violations in their compliance procedures to avoid prosecution and financial fines