Newsletter April 2019

Newsletter April 2019

Our newsletter this month includes: information on the retention of business records, a summary of the recent Spring Statement, a Brexit update, and advice if you can’t afford to pay your tax bill on time.

Retaining business records

Sole traders

If you are self-employed, and obliged to submit a self-assessment tax return, you must keep your tax records for at least five years after the 31 January submission deadline of the relevant tax year. For example, if you submit your 2018-19 tax return online on or before 31 January 2020, you must keep your records until at least the end of January 2025. Records for this purpose include those relating to personal income etc.

If you send your tax return more than four years after the deadline, you will need to keep your records for fifteen months after you submit your tax return.

If you keep your tax records on a computer, make sure you have sufficient backups of your data to meet these requirements. If you change software during the record retention period, you may need to print relevant reports if you are unable to maintain access to data backups.

Limited companies

If you run your business as a limited company you must keep records for six years from the end of the last company financial year they relate to, or longer if:

  • they show a transaction that covers more than one of the company’s accounting periods,
  • the company has bought something that it expects to last more than six years, like equipment or machinery,
  • you sent your Company Tax return late, or
  • HMRC has started a compliance check into your Company Tax return.

If you are not in business, the minimum period is 22 months after the 31 January filing deadline and at least 15 months after filing if later.

GDPR

The new data protection regulations require that you don’t keep the personal data of your customers, staff or other contacts beyond the date required by law that they be retained.

Keeping this data online or in dusty boxes indefinitely is no longer an option, you risk heavy fines if you do.

Most online document management systems now have a filter process that will help you manage this search and destroy requirement. As for the storage boxes, you will have to resort to a more hands on approach.

Spring Statement March 2019

The following comments were written on the 13th March 2019 immediately following Philip Hammond’s presentation of the 2019 Spring Statement to Parliament. In theory, the government uses the Spring Statement to respond to the most recent forecasts made by the Office of Budget Responsibility (OBR).

However, what follows is a short summary of the points Philip Hammond did raise.

Employment

  • Since 2010 there are more than 3.5m more people in work.
  • Employment is forecasted to increase by a further 600,000 by 2023.

Public finances

  • Debt fell last year and is forecast to fall continuously to 2023-24.

Tech and the new economy

  • In response to a government sponsored consultation, moves are afoot to update competition rules and increase competition in the digital economy.
  • The tech market place will be encouraged to allow smaller firms to participate.
  • Regulation may be introduced to make users’ personal data portable. For example, transfer lists of friends to new platforms and search engine histories to new search engines.

Border access

  • From June 2019, citizens of a number of non-EU countries will be able to use e-gates at UK airports and border crossing points.
  • The process of abolishing landing cards will also commence from June 2019.

Clean growth

  • Government is to explore schemes to encourage energy efficiencies for smaller businesses.
  • Developers will need to build in increases in biodiversity.
  • The decarbonisation of gas supplies is to be increased by using green gas suppliers.
  • From 2025 new homes will need to meet new low energy standards.

Housing and infrastructure

  • The government is on track to increase housing supply to its highest level since 1970 by the end of this parliament with an average of 300,000 properties a year.
  • A number of new steps were set out in the Spring Statement including the use of the Housing Infrastructure Fund and the Affordable Homes Guarantee Scheme to help the supply of more new homes across the country.

National Living and National Minimum Wage changes

  • The government has tasked the Low Pay Commission to make recommendations for changes to these rates to apply from April 2020. A response is required by October 2019.

BREXIT update

The last few weeks have seen some of the most extraordinary political manoeuvrings in the UK parliament, and as we complete the edit of this article, the EU parliament seems to have given us a few extra weeks to complete the withdrawal agreement and get a final draft agreed by parliament. The formal statement issued late last night (22 March 2019) says:

“The European Council agrees to an extension until 22 May 2019, provided the Withdrawal Agreement is approved by the House of Commons next week,” the statement from EU leaders said.

“If the Withdrawal Agreement is not approved by the House of Commons next week, the European Council agrees to an extension until 12 April 2019 and expects the United Kingdom to indicate a way forward before this date for consideration by the European Council.”

Over to you Mrs May?

Can’t pay your tax?

A reminder that HMRC may consider extended options for settling your outstanding tax bill. The key is to contact HMRC, explain why you can’t pay on time, and discuss how you can settle any outstanding liabilities.

If you can’t pay before the deadline, call the Business Payment Support Service. Anyone can use this service, not just businesses.

Business Payment Support Service

Telephone: 0300 200 3835
Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm
Saturday and Sunday, 8am to 4pm 

Nominated partners in business partnerships can negotiate time to pay with HMRC on behalf of the partnership or individual partners.

If you’ve missed your payment date

If you’ve received a payment demand, like a tax bill or a letter threatening you with legal action, call the HMRC office that sent you the letter.

Call the Business Payment Support Service if you haven’t received a bill or letter about payment yet.

Self-Assessment

Call the Self-Assessment helpline if you’ve missed your payment date.

Telephone: 0300 200 3822
Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm
Saturday, 8am to 4pm

Tax Diary March/April 2019

1 April 2019 - Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 June 2018.

19 April 2019 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 April 2019. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 April 2019)

19 April 2019 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 April 2019.

19 April 2019 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 April 2019 is payable by today.

30 April 2019 ? 2017-18 tax returns filed after this date will be subject to an additional 10 per day late filing penalty.
1 May 2018 - Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 July 2017.

19 May 2019 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 May 2019. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 May 2019)

19 May 2019 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 May 2019.

19 May 2019 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 May 2019 is payable by today.

31 May 2019 - Ensure all employees have been given their P60s for the 2018-19 tax year.




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