Author Archives: Peggy Nightingale

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Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant

Arun District Council and Adur and Worthing District Councils are bringing their application deadlines for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grants forward

If you are hoping to apply for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant (OHLG), it is important that you keep an eye on your local council websites. Application deadlines have been brought forward by some local authorities to give them time to process and determine grants before the 28 February 2022.

Having checked the websites of councils local to ourselves, we can confirm that application deadlines have been set at 28 February 2022. Other local authorities have similar deadlines.

Below you will find links to the council OHLG pages and the deadlines currently published there. We suggest making regular checks on the websites and submitting your application at the earliest opportunity.
 

Local AuthorityLink to Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant (OHLG)Deadline for applications
Arun District Councilhttps://www.arun.gov.uk/business-covid-19/28 Feb 2022
Adur and Worthing District Councilshttps://www.adur-worthing.gov.uk/coronavirus/business-support/#omicron-hlg  28 Feb 2022

As a reminder businesses eligible for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant can apply for grants of up to £6,000 depending on their rateable value. 

Eligible recipients will receive the following:

  • Rateable Value between £0 and £15,000, £2,700
  • Rateable Value between £15,000 and £51,000, £4,000
  • Rateable Value in excess of £51,000, £6,000

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VAT reclaimable on mileage

HMRC have revised the rates to be used for reclaiming the appropriate fraction of 1/6 of input VAT on mileage claims with effect from 1st December 2021 as follows:

Engine sizePetrol – rate per mileLPG – rate per mile
1400cc or less13 pence9 pence
1401cc to 2000cc15 pence10 pence
Over 2000cc22 pence15 pence
Engine sizeDiesel – rate per mile
1600cc or less11 pence
1601cc to 2000cc13 pence
Over 2000cc16 pence

It is interesting that the rate changes for VAT purposes but not the overall mileage rate of 45p a mile which has been the same where the petrol cost £50 per litre or £1 per litre!


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Exam Success

The Martlet Partnership is delighted to announce that three members of our accounts and taxation team have registered exam success following the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants exam sitting in December.

Our Sri Sivalingam has passed his final exam, Advanced Taxation and is now a fully qualified accountant.

Our Jarrad Gilbertson scored a very impressive 74% in his Strategic Business Leader exam and now has one paper to complete before also being fully qualified.

Finally, our Phil Bazley was successful in his Performance Management exam. Phil also successfully completed his First Aid course this week so we now have three qualified first aiders at our office.

Congratulations to them all on these achievements!


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Three points to report

  1. Tax return deadline extended.

As was the case in 2021, HMRC have taken account of the current coronavirus situation and its impact on individuals and businesses and have announced that no penalties will be issued for tax returns which are filed before 28th February 2022.

The normal deadline is of course 31 January.

However, the deadline for payment of any tax arising remains 31 January and we wish to ensure that all our clients’ tax return are in fact filed by 31 January and not take advantage of this amnesty, on the simple basis that if tax is paid late, interest will be charged.

  1. VAT Penalty Regime.

HMRC were due to bring in a new penalty system with effect from 1 April 2022 but HMRC have announced that this has been delayed by nine months until January 2023. We will not therefore give details of the changes now but will do so nearer the time.

The Financial Secretary to the Treasury, Lucy Fraser said “HMRC is committed to becoming one of the most digitally advanced tax authorities in the world. The extra time allows HMRC to ensure the IT changes necessary.”

Editorial comment – it is nice to know that HMRC have these ambitions. For practitioners such as us, we would rather they concentrated their efforts on actually responding to correspondence quickly instead of the nine to twelve months it now takes to do anything. It seems to us that HMRC are approaching a top down policy to their management of the tax system whereas a “bottom up” approach to sort out the very many inefficiencies that taxpayers are encountering on a daily basis, would be a more fruitful priority.

  1. We warmly congratulate our Henry Van Perlstein and Nick Seaw for having successfully completed their First Aid course.

We would remind all businesses that there is a legal requirement to make sure that they provide adequate and appropriate First Aid equipment, facilities and personnel in the workplace. What this actually entails is not defined in legislation but the Health and Safety Executive recommends that if work activities are low level hazard (EG Office or shop), and there are less than 25 employees, only one appointed person as a minimum may be suitable.

All businesses should undertake an assessment to determine their requirements.


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The 4 Key Things Businesses should do in January

It’s the start of a new year and with the new year comes opportunity as well as challenges. Two years on from the onset of the pandemic, we still find ourselves dealing with some restrictions. Arguably we are getting used to the different measures that have been and continue to be introduced and not having all our usual ‘freedoms’.

But as business owners and managers it can be overwhelming to keep on top of the key things that we need to be doing.

This is why we have produced a handy and practical checklist of The 4 Key things that Businesses should do in January, which you can find below.

These continue to be challenging times. We want you to know that we are here, ready and able to help.


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2022 – The Year of Opportunity

As we near the end of 2021, a time when many of us will reflect on another challenging year, we would like to share a message of hope and positivity for 2022.

The UK economy is in good shape. Despite the doom and gloom in the news, there are many positive signs, including:

· We have the world’s 5th largest economy.

· We are the world’s 8th largest manufacturer; and

· We are the 15th largest exporter.

These numbers were shared by renowned business commentator Justin Urquhart Stewart last month at the UK200Group annual conference. Justin shared his outlook for the UK in 2022 and beyond. He stated that the economy, whilst growing, will stutter but that the recovery is already happening, driven by many factors, including the innovation being shown by UK businesses. And whilst the country has much debt, we also have significant stored wealth.

What does this all mean? It means that there is lots to be positive about. Yes, we remain in uncertain times, but the underlying message is that we came into this tough period in reasonable shape and that this will stand us in good stead.

We mentioned earlier the UK200Group conference. The UK200Group is a professional association of chartered accountancy and law firms across the UK. We are a member firm.

By being a member of the UK200Group we are in effect both the 10th largest accountancy firm and the 29th largest law firm in the UK based on our combined turnover. We benefit from being part of such a large group, both in terms of the connections we have and also the knowledge and experience we can draw on, including some genuine sector specialisms.

And yet we are still your local accountancy firm, in Worthing working closely with clients and trusted advisers in the region.

In short, we are large enough to have the expertise and to be well connected, whilst also being small enough to care.

All of which means that you are in safe hands. We will continue to keep abreast of developments and ensure that you benefit from our knowledge, insights and know-how.

We have a positive outlook for 2022 and look forward to working with you to help you face and succeed in the year ahead.

And finally, we would like to take this opportunity to wish you a Happy Christmas and hope you get some much-needed time with your loved ones over the festive period.

We look forward to supporting you in 2022 and beyond.


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Bounce Back Loan Prosecutions

Two directors owning four companies between them have been prosecuted by the Insolvency Service for obtaining Bounce Back loans under false pretences.. The first gentleman opened three companies and took out a Bounce Back loan of £50,000 for each company and then placed them into voluntary liquidation in the autumn of last year.

These liquidations prompted an investigation by the Insolvency Service who found that the director had made cash withdraws from each of the companies’ bank accounts totalling more than £24,000 and then transferred the remainder of the loans to companies controlled by a close friend.

The close friend in question opened a bank account for a new company in June 2020 and immediately took out a £50,000 Bounce Back loan. He used the funds to purchase a Rolex watch, drew more than £8,400 in cash from the company bank account and transferred £12,500 to other parties. The Insolvency Service’s investigation found there was no evidence that the loans had been used for the benefit of the businesses and that the companies in question had in fact never traded.

As a result, the first gentleman has been issued with a 13 year ban and the second with a six year ban which means that either of them cannot directly or indirectly be involved in the formation or management of a company without permission of the Court.

These are extreme cases but give a clear indication that the Government services will look into insolvencies where Bounce Back loans have been taken out.


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A spending budget about helping working people and businesses recover from the pandemic

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak announced his Budget to Parliament on Wednesday 27th October; the wider implications of which are sure to impact upon businesses across the UK.

This Budget seems to be mostly about helping working people and businesses recover from the pandemic, and so has focused on spending. The two main costs for people have been rather skated over: these are the 1.25% increase in NICs (to become the Social Care Levy) and the increase in corporation tax to 25%. The NIC increase will reduce everyone’s pay packets a little, and the increase in corporation tax will make everything that little bit more expensive in a couple of years’ time – the Chancellor may well be hoping that by the time they start to have an effect, people will have forgotten about them coming in.

It doesn’t seem to be a huge amount of a tax increase to claw back the costs of the pandemic, so we may well see more coming along over the next few years.

The Business Rates changes should make things a little better for smaller high street retailers, but the more important issue for them is whether an Online Sales Tax will be introduced to shift some of the Business Rates burden away from the high street. A consultation is due to be published shortly, so it seems unlikely that there will be any tax changes in the next year or two.

Similarly, the Universal Credit changes will make life a lot better for working people on lower incomes. However, people who can’t work, and those not in UC, aren’t going to see any of that benefit and may find things getting tougher.

Otherwise, this Budget is about rationalising things and tidying them up. The changes to alcohol duties make a lot of sense, though I suspect that drinkers of weak beer and low-strength wine will be the winners, and those who like cider, strong beer, and spirits might well find themselves paying a fair bit more – CAMRA may not see eye to eye with the WHO on this one. Similarly with air passenger duty: domestic flights will be cheaper but long-haul flights will get hit, especially with the oil price going up

And that really sums up the Budget for me: some sensible tidying up, but to be frank it’s going to be lockdown, petrol prices, inflation, and the supply chain that will have more impact on people over the next year or so. You’ll need to save a lot of 3p’s off your beer if you have to buy petrol at £1.60 a litre.

If you’d like to speak with one of The Martlet Partnership’s tax advisers about the Budget please call 01903 600 555 or email info@martletpartnership.com.


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Budget Key Points

Here are some initial key points regarding today’s Budget announcement. More to follow.

New announcements with immediate effect:

  • 30-day reporting and payment deadline for CGT on UK residential property extended to 60 days for transactions that complete on/after 27 October 2021 (the deadline is similarly extended where non-residents dispose of other UK land and buildings)
  • High Income Child Benefit Charge is to be brought within the discovery assessment regime; this will apply retrospectively
  • Cross-border group relief for corporation tax to be abolished w.e.f. 27 October 2021
  • Increases to various ‘cultural’ tax reliefs (e.g. for theatres and orchestras) from 27 October 2021

New announcements taking effect later

  • 100% Annual Investment Allowance for qualifying plant and machinery – limit to remain at £1 million until 31 March 2023
  • Residential Property Developer Tax to be introduced from 1 April 2022: 4% of profits above £25m that are derived from UK residential property development
  • Car fuel benefit multiplier for 2022/23 is £25,300
  • Van benefit charge for 2022/23 is £3,600 and the van fuel benefit charge is £688
  • National Insurance Contribution (NIC) thresholds for 2022/23 increase by 3.1%, except the Upper Earnings Limit for Class 1 and Upper Profits Threshold for Class 4, which are both frozen
  • R&D tax relief to be reformed from 2022/23, but no details yet confirmed
  • ISA investment limit unchanged for 2022/23 at £20,000 (£9,000 for Junior ISA)
  • Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings (ATED) rates rise by 3.1% from April 2022
  • Reform of basis period rules for unincorporated business and LLPs is to proceed (2023/24 will be the transitional year)
  • Temporary reliefs for Business Rates for small businesses in 2022/23, with longer term reform of the system and reliefs for expenditure to be introduced in April 2023
  • Reform of Air Passenger Duty from April 2023: decreases for domestic flights and increases for ‘ultra-long haul’
  • Consultation for fundamental reform of alcohol duties, including incentives for pubs by reducing the duty on draught alcoholic drinks

Confirmation of matters previously announced

  • National Insurance Contributions (NIC) and dividend tax rates to rise by 1.25% from April 2023 to help fund health and social care (NIC rates will return to current rates for 2023/24, when the separate Health and Social Care Levy is introduced)
  • Structures and Buildings Allowance – changes to Allowance Statement requirements
  • ‘Notification of uncertain tax treatments’ will be introduced for large businesses from 1 April 2022, requiring HMRC to be told if they take a tax position in their returns for VAT, corporation tax or income tax (including PAYE) that is uncertain
  • New late submission and payment penalty regimes to be introduced for VAT (for APs beginning on or after 1 April 2022), MTD ITSA from April 2024 and other ITSA taxpayers from 6 April 2025
  • Changes to the ‘Scheme Pays’ reporting deadline from 6 April 2022, where a taxpayer wishes their pension scheme to meet an Annual Allowance tax charge above £2,000
  • Making Tax Digital for Income Tax Self Assessment (MTD ITSA) to be introduced from 2024/25, with an extra year’s delay for general partnerships.
  • Minimum pensions age to access private pensions increases from 55 to 57 from 6 April 2028


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Income Tax MTD Delayed 12 months

In a statement to MPs, new financial secretary to the Treasury Lucy Frazer has confirmed that the introduction of Making Tax Digital (MTD) for income tax will be postponed by a year

The quarterly digital reporting for landlords and the self employed was due to start in 2023, but it will be pushed back by 12 months, the second delay to the digitisation programme.

‘The government recognises the challenges faced by many UK businesses and their representatives as the country emerges from the pandemic over the last year. In recognition of this and of stakeholder feedback, we will now be introducing MTD for ITSA a year later, in the tax year beginning in April 2024,’ said Frazer in a written statement.

‘General partnerships will not be required to join MTD for ITSA until the tax year beginning in April 2025.

‘The date at which all other types of partnerships will be required to join will be confirmed later.’

This delay will also affect the introduction of the new penalty scheme for late filing and late payment of tax for ITSA. This will now be introduced for those who are mandated for MTD for ITSA in the tax year beginning April 2024, and for all other income tax self assessment customers from April 2025.

Editorial comment – the delay of the implementation of this radical change to the tax system is welcome. It is very clear from our experiences and exchanges with HMRC in recent months that they are struggling to cope even more than ever with just basic data input and dealing with correspondence and enquiries. Attempting to bring in such complicated technological changes would, in the short term, in our view, only make the system even more unfit for purpose.


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

Tel.: +44 (0) 1903 600555
Fax.: +44 (0) 1903 600828
E-mail: info@martletpartnership.com

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