Liverpool Accountants Update to Small Business Act

 

The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment act was first drafted and then declared at the Queen’s speech on 4th June 2014. This was then given a Royal Assent on the 26th March 2015, becoming an Act of Parliament. The Act has been constructed with the intention of building the United Kingdom into a more efficient place to start business, grow business and improve finance, thus giving reign to small businesses and entrepreneurs, allowing them to overcome progressive obstacles.

The Act covers a broad range of topics from the Pubs code, insolvency, public sector procurement and corporate transparency. The main areas of which the Act fixates on are: Public sector procurement, regulatory reform, access to finance, company filing requirements, company transparency, insolvency, director’s disqualification, childcare and schooling, education evaluation, employment, Pubs code adjucator and Pubs code.

There are three sections of this Act which are particularly relevant to the majority of ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) members, and they are company transparency, insolvency and access to finance.

Access to finance incorporates the enforcement of swift payment ability changes, obligating large and established organisations to submit their payment process on to a digital program, twice a year. This includes average payment time, proportion of invoices paid beyond terms, any kind of late payment interest and the proportion of invoices paid within 30 days, over 30 days, over 60 days and over 120 days. To actively harbour these plans into effect, the government aims to set secondary legislation during the beginning of next parliament, and will deliberate with stakeholders and enterprises what best way to report this information.

Corporate transparency has introduced the need for organisations to register and identify people with notable control over companies in the UK. In addition, they have also introduced:

  • Abolition of bearer shares
  • Restricted use of corporate directors and a broader range of duties for shadow directors
  • Changes to filing requirements and appointment of directors
  • Shorter duration for striking off organisations
  • The option for private companies to use the central register such as Companies House, to retain its own register of members.
  • Changes to the disqualification of director’s regime, introducing a brand new compensation strategy.
  • Methods for improving register in relation to the organisation’s registered office.

Insolvency has incorporated the ability for the secretary of state to give direction to Recognised Professional Bodies (RPB’s), launch investigations into Individual Insolvency Practitioners (IP’s) and manage enquiries. If you are a small business and need financial advice regarding anything introduced in the act, contact us at Andrew Keates, your local Liverpool accountants.


Liverpool Accountancy News: Tax Updates from April 6th

The new tax year beginning on April 6th has seen some new changes affecting individuals and businesses.  Get ready for the new tax year with the following updates:

The income tax personal allowance has increased to £10,600. This will rise to £10,800 in 2016/17 and further increase to £11,000 in 2017/18. The higher rate threshold on income tax increases to £42,385.

Marriage allowance has also come into effect, spouses and civil partners will be able to transfer up to £1,060 of their personal allowance to their partner. More than 4 million suitable married couples as well as 15,000 civil partners will be able to save £212 a year.

The interest rate of savings tax has been revoked and has reduced from 10% to 0% for savings up to £5,000. As a result, anyone earning under £15,600 a year will no longer have to pay the 10% tax.

Individuals over the age of 55 have flexible access to their defined contribution pension savings. A person who dies before they reach the age of 75 can pass on their unused defined contribution pension savings free of income tax as the 55% tax charge to inherited pensions has been withdrawn. These recipients can now receive any future payments from such policies free of income tax.

Employers will no longer have to pay employer NIC’s (national insurance contributions) for those they employ who are under the age of 21. Class 2 NIC’s for the self-employed can now be retrieved through self- assessment. The employment allowance also now expands to incorporate people employing care and support workers to look after themselves or family members.

The capital gains tax annual exemption has increased from £11,000 to £11,100. The capital gains tax charge on disposals of properties liable to ATED expands to cover residential properties worth £1 million – £2 million.

The annual ISA allowance have raised from £15,000 to £15,240 as well as the threshold for Junior ISA’s and child trust funds increasing from £4,000 to £4,080. Child trust funds can now also be transferred into Junior ISA’s.


Liverpool Accountants Questions: Do I get Tax Relief on my Childcare Costs?

Many of the small businesses we work with from our Liverpool accountancy office are unsure of what they should offer their staff in terms of child care assistance. Some hadn't even taken this into consideration, but employees should be aware of how they can obtain tax relief on their childcare costs.

The current scheme will be replaced this Autumn by the Government's new Tax Free Childcare Scheme. Until then employees and their employer can set up the existing childcare scheme which is out lined below.

Sole Traders Sorry  there is currently no way of obtaining any tax relief for your child carecosts.

If you trade via a limited company the situation is different. Employers can pay up to £243 in total(not per child) for each qualifying employee. If both parents earn a wage from the same company they are entitled to claim so long as the child is in qualifying childcare.

What is QualifyingChildcare?

To qualify the child carer must be registered. This means ofsted approved or registered with a local authority. It can include after-school clubs.

The scheme only applies to children until 1st September after their 15th birthday, or 16th birthday is the child has a disability.

The scheme excludes school fees.

Employers must offer the scheme to all employees.

For Employers

The simplest scheme is to pay the childcare provider directly. If you use a childcare voucher scheme then you will end up paying commission.

To do this write a letter to the childcare provider to inform them that your company is going to contribute to payments. Then make the payments from the company account in a standing order or direct debit arrangement.

No income tax or NI is payable on the benefit and your company can claim the expense against income.

 

For more information on contributing to child care costs for your employees, contact your local Liverpool accountants by emailing enquiries@andrewkeates.com