News and events from TaxCalc
Articles written by Steve Checkley
Every month brings us closer to the launch of Making Tax Digital. Even though the official launch date (or even year for that matter) is yet to be confirmed, you can rest assured that here at TaxCalc we’re actively engaged in developing solutions that will make the transition to MTD as hassle-free as possible. We’ve even reframed our go-to-market position as the Digital Tax People to emphasise our focus and commitment to making MTD work for businesses and accountancy practices.
HMRC have now published their consultation documents on the Making Tax Digital (MTD) strategy. Covering six separate documents and totalling 243 pages, together they set out HMRC’s vision for the future for the UK’s tax system.
For some time now, we’ve been taking time to inform our customers of the key concepts behind Making Tax Digital: Digital Tax Accounts, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and Quarterly Updates. The consultations not only help explain these plans but introduce some new ideas not previously imagined.
We’ve dissected the first of the six documents and here are our high-level findings…
It’s been almost two months since we last posted about HMRC’s Making Tax Digital strategy.
Due to matters such as the local elections and the EU Referendum, not an awful lot has happened since then. However, there have been a few matters of note arising…
As part of HMRC’s Making Tax Digital strategy, we have been expecting security improvements to be made to taxpayers’ access to their online accounts via the Government Gateway.
On 29 March 2016, HMRC introduced a new optional layer of security that introduces a mobile phone into the logging in process for Individual taxpayers…
There is an old saying that the only two things that you can rely upon in life are death and taxes. If you use software to run your practice, you can probably add price increases to that as well.
However, here at TaxCalc, we don’t take the usual industry line of raising prices by an arbitrary percentage every year. We’re different.
So different, in fact, that after five years of holding prices steady, it was only last year that we finally updated our catalogue and made some modest but necessary adjustments to a handful of our products. At the same time, we introduced an Early Renewal Discount, which for many customers actually rendered these increases moot and rewarded loyalty.
This year, we’re again taking an approach to price increases that is different to the industry…
I doubt that it will have escaped the reader of this blog that the Government has recently been extolling the virtues of its radical digital agenda. Back in the Autumn statement last December, it dropped something of a bombshell in the form of quarterly updates of accounting information for the self employed and, although rarely mentioned, for landlords too.
Rather than provide explanation as to how this could all work, the detail is still to follow. Indeed, various publications have recently been released by HMRC but they don’t exactly put much meat on the bones. There’s been research, which I’ll discuss later, but (at time of writing) we are still waiting for preliminary consultation, which will be followed by further consultation later this year.
And, of course, consultation generally only focuses upon one thing at a time. So there appears to be separate consultation to be had on quarterly updates, on the alignment of business activity to tax payments, on the penalties regime and so on.
Quite rightly, there has been much hubbub in the media and amongst both the accountancy practice and self employed industries. Again, I doubt it will have escaped you that there was a petition started to challenge “quarterly returns”. Having gained over 100,000 signatures, Her Majesty’s Government was required to debate the issue…
Just before Christmas, there was a lot of discussion on AccountingWeb regarding quarterly reporting and the notion of there being a petition set up to challenge the strategy as announced in the Autumn Statement.
As an apolitical organisation, we won’t be drawn into whether quarterly reporting is a good idea or not but with 229 comments (at time of writing) on this particular thread, it’s clearly proven to be a fiercely debated topic.
One of the comments that caught my eye during the debate was a call for the Big Four firms and accountancy bodies to use their influence with HMRC.
This gave me two thoughts…
The Government today released a new document about Digital Tax Accounts. Entitled Making Tax Digital, it consolidates information that has been released into the public domain since the March Budget and lays out the roadmap by which HMRC will transform from its current regime to the new digital one.
Having read numerous articles in the press these last few days, many reporters have reiterated the fact that Digital Tax Accounts, both for individuals and businesses, will be the norm by 2020. However, what seems to have slipped somewhat under the radar by a few is the requirement for “most” self employed people and landlords to make quarterly returns from April 2018…