Latest News

HMRC Tax Scam

Telephone and email scams are always a threat, but as we approach the Tax Return deadline of 31 January each year we always see an increase in the number of calls and emails pretending to be HMRC. The most recent scams seem to involve phone calls threatening the listener with arrest and/or deportation if they don't pay their overdue tax immediately.

These scams have become more sophisticated as they are able to make it look as if they are calling from HMRC's official phone number, making it harder to tell if it is real or not.

Advisory Fuel Rate for Company Cars December 2018

These are the suggested reimbursement rates for employees' private mileage using their company car from 1 December 2018.

Where there has been a change the previous rate is shown in brackets.

Capital Allowance on High CO2 Cars and Assets in Special Rate Pool Reduces

One of the other capital allowance changes announced in the Autumn Budget was the reduction of the writing down allowance on assets in the special rate pool from 8% to just 6% per annum reducing balance from April 2019.

The assets included in this pool include long-life assets, such as aircraft, integral features within buildings and cars emitting more than 110g CO2 per kilometre. 

Passing on the Family Home

New inheritance tax rules for passing on the family home started on 6 April 2017. This additional relief should be taken into consideration when drafting your Will and we can work with your solicitor to make sure your Will is tax efficient.

From 6 April 2017 an additional nil rate band of up to £175,000 is available on death where your residence is left to direct descendants. This is in addition to the normal £325,000 nil rate band. 

Increased Capital Allowances Started

The Chancellor announced a temporary increase in the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA) for expenditure on plant and machinery to £1 million from 1 January 2019. However transitional rules mean that the full amount will not necessarily apply to your business straight away. 

Pension Planning

For most taxpayers the maximum pension contribution is £40,000 each tax year, although this depends on their earnings. This limit covers contributions by both the individual and their employer.

Note that the unused allowance for a particular tax year may be carried forward for three years and can be added to the relief for the current year, but then lapses if unused.

New Year Resolution to Save Tax

At this time of year we think about New Year’s resolutions. It is also a good time to start planning your tax affairs before the end of the tax year on 5th April.

An obvious tax planning point would be to maximise your ISA allowances for the 2018/19 tax year (currently £20,000 each). 

New Capital Allowance for Commercial Buildings

The Autumn 2018 Budget announced a new 2% straight line tax deduction for the cost of construction or renovation of commercial buildings and structures. HMRC have now issued a technical note setting out the details for the operation of the new relief. 

Unlike the old Industrial Buildings Allowance the new relief is available for the construction of shops and offices as well as factories and warehouses.

Transferring Your Current Properties into a Company

What do you need to consider? Sadly the answer to this question is “It Depends!!”

However, there are some general principles that we can consider when looking at this situation.

There are a couple of questions which depend on your tax position and a few that relate to your preferences.

VAT and Rental Income

Rental income is classified as exempt for VAT purposes as far as HM Revenue and Customs are concerned. 

For residential property rental income there is no means of being VAT registered.

The position for Commercial Property is different as you have the option to opt to tax a property and this can be done individually per property. 

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