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Annual Investment Allowance

15 Sep, 2016

The Annual Investment Allowance (AIA) limit has changed significantly over the last number of years. However, the limit has been fixed at £200,000 for all qualifying expenditure on or after 1 January 2016.

Enterprise Management Incentive (EMI) schemes

15 Sep, 2016

The use of the EMI can help small growing companies to attract and retain sought after employees. The EMI allows employees to buy shares free of Income Tax and NICs on the difference between the amount paid for shares when an option is used and the actual value at the time. HMRC’s guidance has been updated.

Sports Direct to address its employment failings

13 Sep, 2016

Earlier this year, the founder of the embattled retailer Sports Direct was given a grilling by a government select committee of MPs following allegations of poor working practices and worker exploitation at its Derbyshire warehouse.

Over £14 million in civil penalties for illegal working

13 Sep, 2016

The government has published a quarterly report which shows that the total gross value of fines (civil penalties) issued to UK employers between January and March 2016 for employing illegal workers was over £14 million, covering 1,195 illegal workers and 838 penalties. Over half (662) of these illegal workers were found in London and the South East of England.

Nursing home fined for failing to keep personal information secure

08 Sep, 2016

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has fined a nursing home in Northern Ireland £15,000 for failing to keep secure the sensitive personal information they held. The breach of the Data Protection Act 1998 occurred when an employee took an unencrypted work laptop home and this was then stolen during a burglary overnight.

Current HMRC tax campaigns

08 Sep, 2016

HMRC has updated their online guidance covering targeted campaigns against tax avoidance that are currently available to taxpayers. The guidance on long running compliance issues for these campaigns has been updated.

The following disclosure opportunities are currently available:

Second Incomes Campaign

The Second Incomes Campaign offers individuals the opportunity to inform HMRC that they have undeclared income from a supplementary income stream. The campaign targets individuals in employment who have additional untaxed sources of income.

Worldwide Disclosure Facility launched

08 Sep, 2016

At the end of August, HMRC announced a new Worldwide Disclosure Facility (WDF) would be launched on 5 September 2016. The WDF, first announced at Budget 2015, allows those with outstanding tax to pay (relating wholly or in part to an offshore issue) to put their affairs in order. This replaces previous country- specific amnesties such as agreements with Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

£3 billion raised from accelerated payments

08 Sep, 2016

The introduction of new anti-avoidance legislation in July 2014 gave HMRC powers to demand upfront payment of disputed tax from taxpayers using avoidance schemes. Taxpayers that have used a tax avoidance scheme may have to make a payment of the amount that relates to their use of the scheme, before the final amount has been agreed or determined. This is known as the Accelerated Payments Notice (APN) regime.

Don’t want an annual tax summary?

08 Sep, 2016

HMRC’s annual tax summary shows individual taxpayers how much Income Tax and National Insurance Contributions they paid and includes a table and chart to show how this contributes to different areas of public expenditure, such as health, welfare, education and defence. The summaries are mailed annually.

An estimated 29 million UK taxpayers receive a personalised summary. Taxpayers do not receive a personal tax summary if they have paid no Income Tax or if information is outstanding.

PAYE Settlement Agreement deadline

08 Sep, 2016

A PAYE Settlement Agreement (PSA) allows employers to make one annual payment to cover all the tax and National Insurance due on small or irregular taxable expenses or benefits for your employees.

The expenses or benefits included in a PSA must be defined as one of the following;

Tax codes for new employees

08 Sep, 2016

Employers that take on a new employee need to work out which tax code and starter declaration to use in their payroll software. Incorrect tax codes can lead to the new employee paying more tax than is due. HMRC has developed an online tool that can be used to work out any new employee's tax code correctly.

Tackling the hidden economy

01 Sep, 2016

August has been a busy month for the publication of many consultations that had been delayed by the Brexit referendum and the emergence of Theresa May as Prime Minister. Included in the raft of consultations were three consultation documents aimed at tackling the hidden economy. We may have a new Prime Minister and Chancellor but proposals to tackle the black economy remain high on the agenda.

The consultation documents are as follows: