If your turnover is more than £82,000 (2015/16) then you are required to register for VAT.  You will then have to submit a VAT return to HMRC, usually every quarter.

However even if you are not required to register it can sometimes be advantageous to register voluntarily.  For example if your customers are VAT registered it’s irrelevant to them if you charge VAT (as they claim it back) but it then allows you to claim back the VAT on your expenses.

Deciding whether to register can be confusing but don’t worry we can talk you through it and make sure you receive the best advice based on your individual circumstances.

If you use a bookkeeping software package you more than likely have the ability to submit your VAT returns electronically yourself.

VAT can be complex so many clients choose to outsource to us especially if you want to take advantage of VAT schemes or things like Fuel Scale Charges (call us for more info!)

When we complete your VAT returns we don’t just take the figures from your bookkeeping software and submit them to HMRC.  We start by reviewing your bookkeeping because inaccuracies mean the VAT return could be incorrect.

We pay attention to your business expenses ensuring you pay the correct amount and we review your circumstances to see if we can make any recommendations.

These recommendations range from advising you to de-register or perhaps suggesting that cash accounting could be appropriate.

This thorough process vastly reduces the risk of errors keeping the VAT man happy and giving you peace of mind.

Another benefit of asking us to do your VAT returns is that we’ll act on your behalf should the HMRC decide to investigate your returns.

HMRC can launch an investigation through random selection or because the figures don’t look right.  They are conducting investigations more frequently but hopefully we can half the chance of you being inspected just by being sure they are correct. 

Our basic price is £15 per month however we may charge a bit more if you have lots of transactions or are particularly complex.  All fees are agreed in advance before any work takes place.

Help & Advice

Articles from our blog written by Jessica Brooks

Further changes to how you can pay HMRC

Important Information about Changes to Paying HMRC

HMRC are making some changes to the ways customers can make payments.

The pay at the Post Office service will be withdrawn from 15th December 2017 and from 13th January 2018, HMRC will no longer accept payment by personal credit card. Debit cards and corporate credit cards will continue to be accepted.

There are still many ways to pay including:

• Direct Debit

• Online or telephone banking (including Faster Payments, Bacs and CHAPS)

• Debit/Corporate Credit card online or by telephone.

Just remember to pay your bill by 15th December 2017 if you want to go to the Post Office

and by 13th January 2018 if you want to use a personal credit card

Can I pay my tax bill with a credit card?

For whatever reason some people would like or need to pay their tax liability by credit card.  It can help spread the payments or free up cash that is needed elsewhere in your business.

Up until now you have been able to do so.  However from 13th January 2018 HMRC will no longer be accepting payments from personal credit cards.  Corporate, Business and Commercial credit cards are not affected and you will still be able to make payments by debit card.

What's the reason for this? - You might have heard on the news that there has been a change in EU law regarding merchants passing on the cost of credit card fees to the consumer, from 13th January 2018 they are no longer allowed to.  And it is good news really for all consumers.. but not if you wanted to pay your tax bill by personal credit card...

Within the change in EU law HMRC are also included as 'merchants' so they are not allowed to pass on the credit card charges to the consumer.  Currently HMRC is only allwed to accept credit card payments on the basis that there is 'no cost to the public purse' so this new law will mean that HMRC cannot accept credit card payments from the date the law changes.

So if you are intending to pay your tax bill by credit card you have until 13th January 2018 to do so.  This ultimately means that you cannot leave your self assessment until the last minute.  You will need to do your self assessment in good time so that you know what you owe and can pay what you owe by 13th January 2018. Don't be caught out unexpectedly and wait until 31st January 2018 to make your payment as you will not be able to make it by personal credit card.

What’s an Accountant for?

What’s an Accountant for?

Why does anyone need an accountant?  

How do they help me?  

What do they do anyway?

Here’s my answers to those questions:

Keeping you Legal.  We help you do your financial administration so you file everything you need to, on time, every time.

Saving Tax.  We help you save tax by making sure you do things in a way that incurs as little tax as possible.

Understanding your taxes.  Helping you understand how you are taxed, so you can plan for it.

Knowing your numbers.  Helping you understand your business by interpreting the numbers for you, so you can make decisions based on fact not just intuition.

Making you rich.  Helping you put a plan together so you can get your personal finances in order and meet your financial goals.

Budgeting and forecasting.  Planning for the future, so you can arrange your finances effectively.

Support.  Your accountant is probably one of the few people you can talk to with complete honesty about your business.  He knows the facts, so there is no need to show off or for false modesty.  

If you need any help with these, you know where we are.

Jess Brooks