Tax Services for Businesses
If you are running a business, you will be involved with a wide range of taxation obligations. Ward Goodman’s tax accountants have provided a trusted tax service for over 30 years.
We use our professional expertise to keep an eye on constantly changing legislation and practice, and we use this to make sure you can claim the appropriate reliefs and deductions that allow you to keep your tax charges as low as they can be. We do our best to advise you of upcoming liabilities well in advance. We have the technical skills deal with a wide range of clients: from start-ups to large groups.
We are expecting that HMRC’s Making Tax Digital Project (MTD) will bring significant changes to the way the UK tax system works. Businesses will have to keep their records on computer software (no more paper bags or hard back cash books) and this software will have to include new features to allow direct quarterly updates to HMRC. This is similar to how payroll reporting is already working.
Current expectation is that VAT will be the first sector to enter the new system, in April 2019. We believe that enabling our clients to use cloud accounting is the best way of making sure you are ready for these changes and our outsourcing team will be happy to help.
HMRC’s original implementation dates have been significantly delayed, so it is not yet clear when non VAT registered businesses, or Landlords, or Companies will have to start to use the new quarterly reporting systems.
Services we offer
Our aim is to give you peace of mind by helping you to meet all your tax reporting requirements accurately and on time, whether you are a sole trader, running a partnership, or a limited company. Many clients are directors of their own limited companies, so as well as helping you to manage the company’s tax, we also advise on tax efficient profit extraction strategies, and look after your personal tax affairs.
UK Limited Companies pay Corporation Tax (CT) on their taxable profits, which are not quite the same as accounting profits. Partnerships or sole traders do not pay CT, but other organisations, such as members’ clubs, societies, and co-operatives can be liable to CT. Check our tables section for current rates and due dates. Companies file annual tax returns which we prepare alongside your business accounts. Most business expenses reduce the company’s taxable profits but tax rules do not always match accounting treatments. Some expenses do not reduce the taxable profit. In order to be tax deductible, expenses have to be incurred by the company, and must be wholly and exclusively for the purposes of the trade. Claiming for personal petrol costs are a typical example of this type of issue: if you are not running a company car then it is usually better to claim for mileage. Similarly, mobile phone contracts should be between the company and the telecoms provider: if this is set up correctly you get he best result for taxable profits, VAT recovery and benefits in kind treatment for employees.
Value Added Tax
A business can choose to become VAT registered from the day it starts trading, but it is a legal requirement to register as soon as your turnover exceeds £85,000. Many business owners today choose to become VAT registered as this gives a more professional feel to the company for potential clients looking to use their services.
Once registered, your business becomes a tax collector, as you will be charging VAT on the goods and services you provide. Therefore, your customers will be paying you VAT that you then need to pay onto HMRC. We will help you register and explain how to deal with the intricacies of the system, including helping you complete quarterly VAT returns, and advising if any of the special schemes for cash basis or retailers are appropriate.
Once your business is VAT registered, you can reclaim VAT included in most day-to-day business expenses, and some business assets. In order to reclaim the VAT, you just need to ensure that you have a copy of the VAT invoice from the VAT registered supplier.
Be aware though, that there are some business expenses on which you are unable to reclaim the VAT, such as client entertainment and purchases of cars, and some expenses that are exempt from VAT such as insurance and postage costs. If you are exporting or importing goods or services there is even more to think about.
Tax reliefs for Research and Development
Research and Development “R&D” reliefs are available to companies that work on innovative projects in science and technology that seek to research or develop an advance in their field. We have a track record, achieving successful claims for our clients. Firstly, we will review your project to see if a claim is possible. If your work meets the criteria, we will collaborate with you to identify all the relevant costs using a well-practiced checklist system, and then submit your claims for this valuable tax relief. We do not base our charges on a % of the tax saving achieved, so you will find our service cost effective as well as experienced.
Stamp Duty Land Tax SDLT
Are you buying residential or commercial property, or advising clients who are making property transactions?
The complexity of the law means many questions need to be asked to clarify the right tax treatment. Property buyers need to take advice on how these rules can affect their costs at an early stage in the buying process.
Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings and Non Resident Companies
Do you have a UK residential property that is owned through a company ? If yes, you may need to complete an annual return and pay a tax charge – or you may be able to claim a relief. This tax charge is relevant to properties with a market value on 1 April 2017 of over £500,000, although some types of property are exempted. If you think this could affect you please come and talk to us.
Benefits in Kind and remuneration planning
Employers may choose to provide benefits as part of an employment package and these can be popular with staff. These benefits have to be treated as extra earnings and reported each year. Working out how much is taxable can be straightforward if the benefit is medical insurance, but if you are providing employees with more unusual benefits such as accommodation the tax treatment can be more complex. Mobile phones can be tax free benefits, but only if the contract is set up properly. We advise on tax efficient choices for cars and vans and we help you to meet reporting requirements. HMRC’s A-Z guide is a useful reference tool.
Tax reliefs for plant and machinery
If you are thinking of investing in a large item of equipment, you can take advantage of the Government’s Annual Investment Allowance. This currently lets businesses set off up to £200,000 of the cost of new “Plant and Machinery” against corporation tax. Plant and Machinery includes computers, business vehicles, office furniture and odder items such as zoo cages and dry docks. Other specialist allowances are available on items using environmentally friendly technologies and some low CO2 emission cars . There is a further category of Integral Features. Build costs do not qualify for these tax allowances but items within a commercial project such as wiring and services can be claimed for. If you are including significant buildings expenditure do talk to us at an early stage in the project, and you may wish to look at our Capital Allowances Service sheet in the Resources section.
Dealing with HMRC enquiries
HMRC can raise enquiries into any aspect of your tax affairs, whether these are routine inspections to check PAYE or VAT compliance, or more specific request s for further information about unusual transactions. We handle all enquiries by HM Revenue & Customs into our clients’ tax affairs and provide a comprehensive service to bring them to a conclusion in the best way possible for the client. We offer an affordable fee protection insurance scheme which, if taken up, enables us to provide the right level of service to protect the client from any enquiry, with our costs being covered by the insurance scheme.