Monthly Archives: February 2021

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Late filing penalty update

Recently, HMRC announced that Self Assessment customers will not be charged the initial 5% late payment penalty if they pay their tax or make a Time to Pay arrangement by 1‌‌ April.

The payment deadline for Self Assessment is 31 January and interest will be charged from 1 February on any amounts outstanding. The deadline has not changed, but this year, because of the impact of COVID 19, HMRC is giving taxpayers more time to pay or set up a payment plan. 

Payment plans or payments in full must be in place by midnight on 1‌‌ April to avoid a late payment penalty.

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Managing partners meet to discuss state of their nations

At UK200Group, we hold ad hoc drop in calls for Managing Partner members of the Group. Drop in calls are a safe space for those partners to discuss issues and celebrate wins in their firms, skilfully led by our chair, David Macdonald (The Martlet Partnership).

Built on our foundation of openness and transparency, these calls seek to facilitate business focussed discussions on issues affecting firms. Our most recent call was held in January 2021; a brief overview can be found below. 

As courts are open, civil matters are being held via video. Consequently, legal firms are making headway through litigated matters – and as the residential property market is buoyant, instructions remain a steady stream in this area. Meantime, firms are recruiting staff in all disciplines and levels to support this continued growth. 

In the world of accountancy, international work remains constant – with Brexit necessitating an increase in advisory work surrounding, for example, VAT. Also, transactional, corporate finance, compliance, and audit work remains steady. Similarly, recruitment has remained constant at both junior and senior levels. 

Helen Spencer (Managing Partner at WR Partners) was on hand to reflect: “This year has presented unprecedented challenges for all of us – clients and team members alike. It has been an honour to witness how we have all risen to those challenges and most will be ending the financial year safe in the knowledge that we have out-performed all expectations.” 

Many firms continue to win new clients – testament to our members’ commitment to quality – and firms are continuingly to utilize our member only enquiries service to utilize their colleague’s skills in other firms amongst the group. 

Our Chair, David Macdonald (The Martlet Partnership) was on hand to comment: “All in all, despite the on-going COVID-19 crisis, members are working harder than ever to care for their existing clients, win new clients and to bring new recruits on board within their firms.”

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Recent court ruling and its possible impact on businesses

Isobel Horswell of UK200Group business partner Ntegrity, and Marketing Taskforce member discusses the recent court ruling and it’s possible impact on businesses. 

Many policyholders will have been celebrating after the Supreme Court ruling on insurance contract wordings went substantially in their favour.  While this may offer hope to SME’s, the ruling may not be the solution for all situations for a number of reasons:

• Policies have slightly different wordings and only a selection of specific examples were considered.  You need to read your policy carefully and speak to your broker to see if it covers you for losses arising from Covid.  

• For a claim to be accepted, policyholders need to show that they have suffered a loss and quantify it.  This will be easier to prove for some industries than others.  A number of government grants (CBILS, SEISS, rates relief, local authority to name a few) will have helped tide many over and SMEs may need their accountants to help crunch the figures.  

Hospitality, leisure and manufacturing operations that have had to close for long periods or substantially curtail their business operations will have significant reductions in turnover, and profit, compared to the previous years.  

It may be less clear cut for professional services firms, such as accountants and lawyers, who have adapted to allow staff to work from home, incurring some costs but often with little reduction in turnover. Anecdotally, we’ve heard that many accountants have been far busier than expected helping clients with Brexit and Covid related matters.

It is worth noting that claims will be met from Insurers reserves but all policyholders, including those substantially unaffected by Covid, could see premium increases in future years as Insurers recover their losses.

In conclusion, this is only the first step for many policyholders and there may be more work to be carried out before any cash arrives in your bank account.

Contact Us

The Martlet Partnership LLP
Martlet House
E1 Yeoman Gate
Yeoman Way
West Sussex
BN13 3QZ

Tel.: +44 (0) 1903 600555
Fax.: +44 (0) 1903 600828