The childcare voucher scheme is ending, act now

23rd August 2018

Employers regularly offer the childcare voucher scheme as a way of supporting parents within their organisation. The tax-free scheme has long been popular with working parents, allowing eligible individuals to earn up to £55 per month in childcare vouchers by way of salary sacrifice.  However, given the forthcoming changes, there are some things you should consider.

You may continue offering the current scheme to eligible staff, however, it will only be available to those who sign up before October 4th, 2018. From this date onwards, any new applicants will only be eligible for the government led programme which requires no involvement on your behalf. This new scheme instead asks individuals to deposit funds into an account on the HMRC website, and the government will also contribute up to £2,000 per child per year.

Alternatively, you may take this opportunity to cease your involvement in the employer-led voucher scheme altogether, as this is totally voluntary, in an effort to make things more equal for all staff. However, you should consider how this will be received by those who currently benefit from it, particularly if this forms part of an attractive benefits package.

Whichever way you decide to proceed, it is important that you inform your employees appropriately, using a combination of emails, promotional posters, and informal meetings. If you plan to continue offering the scheme you should encourage interested staff to apply as soon as possible, as they must have received the first set of vouchers prior to the cut-off date if they are to be able to use the scheme.

We offer a full range of payroll services, please feel free to get in touch if you would like more information.

Are you ready for Making Tax Digital?

27th July 2018

HMRC’s Making Tax Digital initiative will be the most significant change to the tax system for taxpayers and their advisors since the introduction of self-assessment. With 8 months to go, people's awareness of this huge change is still very limited.

By April 2019, all VAT registered businesses with a turnover above the £85,000 VAT threshold will need to provide quarterly information electronically to HMRC. This goes beyond online VAT filing - the exact details are still to be confirmed by HMRC pending the results of their MTD pilot this year.

It is hoped that by 2020 or shortly after, all other forms of tax will be mandatory for MTD, so anyone who completes a tax return will be affected.

We at Evans are working closely with partners to deliver an effective MTD solution to all our clients. Please give us a call or email if you would like to know more.

Undisclosed offshore income and gains - Act now!

20th July 2018

The 30th of September 2018 is a vitally important date for all those who have previously undisclosed offshore income and gains. This is the date by which you have to disclose income and gains and settled any tax liabilities arising. 

So, why is this so important? – Because a number of new laws become effective from that date, not least of all the potential for penalties to double from 100 to 200% of the potential lost revenue where HMRC subsequently discover undisclosed income and gains, plus a potential further 10% of the value of the overseas assets held.

How will HMRC know about previously undisclosed assets? - Using the Common Reporting Standard between the UK and 90 other countries. This is a financial information exchange mechanism so the chances are HMRC may already know about some assets.

Please get in touch if you feel you may be affected by this.

 

Budget 2017

Key points for small businesses from the Autumn budget which will come into effect from the 6th of April 2018;

  • The VAT Threshold will be frozen for two years at £85,000. Although it hasn't dropped as expected, more people will cross the threshold due to inflation.
  • The Personal Allowance is increasing from £11,500 to £11,850 for the 2018-19 tax year.
  • Basic rate income tax band will be increased from £33,500 to £34,500.
  • The marriage allowance - the amount of unused personal tax allowance which can be transferred between spouses, will increase to £1,185 a year.
  • The amount of tax free dividend income will drop from £5,000 a year to £2,000 a year.
  • Research & Development tax credits will increase from 11% to 12% to encourage investment in R&D.
  • The indexation allowance on corporate capital gains for disposals will be frozen, effectively removing relief for inflation on disposals of assets after 1st of January 2018.

National Living and National Minimum wage levels from April 2018

  • £3.70 for apprentices in their first year or under 19
  • £4.20 for those under 18
  • £5.90 aged 18-20
  • £7.38 aged 21-24
  • £7.83 aged 25 and over

For details on these points and much more, contact us on 0115 9427867 or email info@evansaccountants.co.uk