Making Tax Digital for Income Tax and Corporation Tax approaching

Saffery Champness is encouraging owners of farm and land-based businesses yet to give consideration to compliance with the requirements of Making Tax Digital for Income Tax or Corporation Tax to take time to plan for those changes.

David Chismon, Partner, Saffery Champness, and head of the firm’s Land and Rural Business Group, says:

“Whilst it was recently announced that the introduction of MTD for income tax will be deferred for a further year to April 2024, there are major changes on the horizon. Businesses that are yet to start planning for the changes need to start thinking now.

“Many will already be set up and complying with the requirements of MTD for VAT. Those VAT registered businesses that are yet to report under the requirements of MTD for VAT will be required to comply from April 2022, regardless of size. However, digital reporting for Income Tax or Corporation Tax brings additional considerations.”

For Income Tax, compliance will be required from April 2024 for individuals with unincorporated businesses or landlords with turnover or property income exceeding £10,000. This will include digital quarterly reporting to HMRC of income and expenses through approved software.

Some general partnerships with income/turnover exceeding £10,000 will be required to comply from April 2025. However, other types of partnerships, including LLPs and general partnerships with trust or corporate members, will be required to join MTD for Income Tax at a future date, yet to be confirmed.

The precise date for the introduction of MTD for Corporation Tax is yet to be announced although it is thought that this is unlikely to be before April 2026. Many businesses will need to upgrade their financial recording and reporting systems to comply with the requirement to keep accounting records in a digital format and to be able to provide information digitally to HMRC.

David Chismon says:  “It may still feel like some way off, especially given the recent deferral of MTD for Income Tax for a further year, but for a lot of businesses, the changes that will be required to comply cannot be implemented overnight and will need careful thought and planning.”

Saffery Champness has produced two new briefing notes on MTD and Corporation Tax and MTD and Income Tax, now available online at https://www.saffery.com/our-services/tax/making-tax-digital

About Saffery Champness LLP
Saffery Champness LLP is a firm of chartered accountants that advises individuals and families, not-for-profit organisations and businesses across a range of sectors. As a member of Nexia International, it is part of a worldwide network of independent accounting and consulting firms. For over 160 years, the firm’s success has been founded upon providing clients with a genuinely partner-led service and working with them to create bespoke solutions that help them to achieve their personal and business objectives. For more information visit www.saffery.com or see Twitter @Safferys

Government announces National Insurance and dividend tax increases

The Government has announced a considerable investment in both the NHS and Social Care. To fund this investment, the Government have introduced the Health and Social Care Levy from April 2022.

The NHS and Social Care Levy will raise the additional tax as follows:

  • 1.25% increase in National Insurance Contributions from Employers;
  • 1.25% increase in National Insurance Contributions from Employees;
  • 1.25% increase in National Insurance Contributions from the Self-Employed;
  • 1.25% increase in taxation on dividends;
  • Those of pensionable age will also pay the increased 1.25% National Insurance Contribution on any earned income from April 2023.

These tax increases will hit a broad range of taxpayers, from businesses to employees to investors and pensioners. This increased tax will also catch business owners who usually draw their income in the form of dividends.
These changes will lead to higher future costs for all businesses and especially companies, when combined with the 6% increase in Corporation Tax from April 2023. As a result, businesses may need to reduce their payroll or costs elsewhere or consider increasing prices, while individuals will need to think about managing the impact on their personal finances.

As a TC client, you may wish to consider some of the following options:

  • Advice on enhanced tax deductions including:
    • Capital Allowances;
    • Research and Development claims;
    • Patent Box;
  • Drawing down income before April 2022;
  • Advice on HR compliance and taxation implications around redundancies;
  • Employee incentive arrangements and tax-efficient benefits;
    • Review of business costs to identify potential savings;
    • Review of your investment portfolio to non-share investments.

In a separate matter, the Pension Triple Lock has been suspended for one year, given the link with earnings, so there is a double lock on 2.5% and Inflation.

If you would like to speak to us about how best to respond to these changes, please contact Taylorcocks.

HM Revenue: No Self Assessment late filing penalty for those who file online by 28 February

Self Assessment customers will not receive a penalty for their late online tax return if they file by 28 February, HM Revenue and Customs’ Chief Executive Jim Harra has announced.

More than 8.9 million customers have already filed their tax return. HMRC is encouraging anyone who has not yet filed their tax return to do so by 31 January, if possible.

Anyone who cannot file their return by the 31 January deadline will not receive a late filing penalty if they file online by 28 February.

Taxpayers are still obliged to pay their bill by 31 January. Interest will be charged from 1 February on any outstanding liabilities. Customers can pay online, via their bank, or by post before they file.  More information on how to pay is at GOV.UK.

Taxpayers who cannot afford to pay their tax bill on time can apply online to spread their bill over up to 12 months. But they will need to file their 2019-20 tax return before setting up a time to pay arrangement, so HMRC is encouraging everyone to do this as soon as possible.

HMRC’s Chief Executive, Jim Harra, said:

“We want to encourage as many people as possible to file their return on time, so we can calculate their tax bill and help them if they can’t pay it straight away. But we recognise the immense pressure that many people are facing in these unprecedented times and it has become increasingly clear that some people will not be able to file their return by 31 January. 

“Not charging late filing penalties for late online tax returns submitted in February will give them the breathing space they need to complete and file their returns, without worrying about receiving a penalty. We can reasonably assume most of these people will have a valid reason for filing late, caused by the pandemic.”

Normally, late filing penalties are applied to all returns filed after the 31 January deadline. Those penalties are cancelled if the customer has a reasonable excuse for filing late. However, this year HMRC is not issuing late filing penalties for a month to help taxpayers and agents who are unable to meet the deadline. Late filing penalties will not be issued for online tax returns received by 28 February.

HMRC has previously said that it was keeping the situation closely under review. It has become increasingly clear from the filing rate that some taxpayers and agents cannot file on time, and the department has now determined that ensuring no customer will receive late filing penalties if they file online before the end of February is the best way to help them.

HMRC has increased support for customers who may need help with their tax liabilities. Once they have completed their 2019-20 tax return, customers can set up an online payment plan to spread Self Assessment bills of up to £30,000 over up to 12 monthly instalments. Customers can apply for self-serve Time to Pay via GOV.UK. Interest will be applied to any outstanding balance from 1 February 2021.

More than 42,000 customers have already used the service, without needing to call HMRC, to manage their liabilities totalling almost £130 million.

Customers with bills over £30,000, or who need longer than 12 months to pay their bill, can call HMRC 0300 200 3822 to discuss time to pay.

Customers who are required to make Payments on Account, and know their bill is going to be lower than the previous tax year, for example due to loss of earnings because of COVID-19, can reduce their Payments on Account. Visit GOV.UK to find out more about Payments on Account and how to reduce them.

Customers who are trying to contact HMRC in the run up to the deadline can do so via webchat, Twitter or the Self Assessment phone helpline. They may also find the information they need via the free HMRC app or their Personal Tax Account.

The phone helpline and webchat will both be open on 30 and 31 January, in addition to the weekday service. Opening times are below:

  • Telephony and Card Payment Lines: Saturday 30 January: 08:00 to 18:00 and Sunday 31 January: 09:00 to 18:00
  • Webchat: Saturday 30 January and Sunday 31 January: 08:00 to 20:00

To protect against identity fraud customers must verify their identity when accessing HMRC’s online services. They must have two sources of information including:

  • credit reference agency data
  • tax credits
  • P60/payslip
  • UK Passport