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Jan 24

Tax payment time again

As all our self-assessment readers will be aware, 31 January is the date by which any arrears of tax for 2017-18 need to be settled, together with a payment on account for 2018-19, if one is due.

Those who have completed their tax returns for 2017-18 should be aware what these liabilities amount to and any clients reading this article who are unsure what they should be paying, please call so that we can advise you.

If you have cash problems and are unable to clear tax due on the 31 January, you can approach HMRC for extended terms. Call:

Business Payment Support Service – 0300 200 3835, or
Self Assessment Payment Helpline – 0300 200 3822

If you miss the payment deadline and receive a letter or bill threatening legal action, call the HMRC office that sent you the letter.

Before you call be sure to estimate how much you can pay on account and you will normally need to clear any balance before any future payments on account become due (ordinarily this would be before 31 July 2019 when the second payment on account for 2018-19 falls due).

And don’t forget, HMRC will charge interest on tax paid late and penalties so make you call before the 31st January 2019 to minimise these costs

Jan 24

The top rate of Income Tax is 45%?

Named the additional rate, the highest rate of Income Tax is 45%, and some might say 45% is high enough.

However, if the rate of tax is measured as the relationship between income and tax plus tax related penalties paid, there are times when this 45% can rise, to as much as 90%.

For example, if HMRC discovers that a taxpayer has been negligent in declaring all their income for tax purposes, they can charge a penalty. This can be as much as 100% of the tax due – effectively this doubles the rate of tax charged. And so, if you are paying tax on under-declared income at 45%, and if a 100% penalty is levied, the effective rate of tax charged is 90% of the income declared.

Whilst this may be an extreme example, consider taxpayers whose income exceeds £100,000. For the tax year 2018-19, for every £2 your income exceeds £100,000 you lose £1 of your tax personal allowance. This means that taxable income between £100,000 and £123,700 is taxed at an effective rate of 60%.

All is not what it seems.

Jan 24

CGT planning for married couples

This article is also relevant to couples who have entered into a civil partnership.

For the tax year 2018-19, taxpayers can make tax-free capital gains of up to £11,700.

This allowance is available on a per person basis and so married couples (and those in a civil partnership) have a combined CGT allowance of £23,400.

Consider married couple John and Joy. Joy wants to dispose of a block of shares before 6 April 2019, but this will create a taxable gain of £22,000. After her CGT allowance is deducted this will create a CGT bill of £2,060 – Joy is a higher rate taxpayer and so she would pay CGT at 20%.

John is retired and has relatively little income for 2018-19 and no capital gains. It is quite legitimate for Joy to gift 50% of her shares to John before they are sold – gifts between spouses and civil partners are free of CGT. Each party would then sell their half-shares and chargeable gains of £11,000 each would be covered by their £11,700 allowance. Hey presto, no CGT to pay.

John and Joy decide to use the tax saved to fund a well earned winter break abroad. Not a bad outcome and an entirely acceptable tax planning ploy.

Jan 24

Newsletter · Thursday, 6 December 2018

Our newsletter this month includes: information on director disqualification, the Marriage Allowance, Annual Investment Allowance, Childcare Scheme Update, MTD timeline, Reporting tips for building contractors and £50 note gets new lease of life.

 Our next newsletter will be published on Thursday, 10 January 2019.

Jan 24

Tax Diary December 2018/January 2019

 1 December 2018 - Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 29 February 2018.

19 December 2018 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 December 2018. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 December 2018)

19 December 2018 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 December 2018.

19 December 2018 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 December 2018 is payable by today.

30 December 2018 - Deadline for filing 2017-18 self-assessment tax returns online to include a claim for under payments to be collected via tax code in 2019-20.

1 January 2019 - Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 March 2018.

19 January 2019 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 January 2019. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 January 2019)

19 January 2019 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 January 2019.

19 January 2019 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 January 2019 is payable by today.

31 January 2019 – Last day to file 2017-18 self-assessment tax returns online.

Jan 24

Are you eligible to claim the Marriage Allowance?

 Marriage Allowance lets you transfer £1,190 of your Personal Allowance to your husband, wife or civil partner - if they earn more than you.

This reduces their tax by up to £238 in the tax year. To benefit from this arrangement, you (as the lower earner) must have an income below your Personal Allowance - this is £11,850 for the current tax year.
You can backdate your claim to include any tax year since 5 April 2015.

If your partner has died since 5 April 2015 you can still claim - phone the Income Tax helpline. If your partner was the lower earner, the person responsible for managing their tax affairs needs to phone.

Who can apply?

You can benefit from Marriage Allowance if all the following apply:

  • You’re married or in a civil partnership.
  • You do not pay Income Tax, or your income is below your Personal Allowance (£11,850 for 2018-19).
  • Your partner pays Income Tax at the basic rate, which usually means their income is between £11,851 and £46,350.

If you’re in Scotland, your partner must pay the starter, basic or intermediate rate, which usually means their income is between £11,850 and £43,430.

It will not affect your application for Marriage Allowance if you or your partner:

  • are currently receiving a pension;
  • live abroad - as long as you get a Personal Allowance.

If you or your partner were born before 6 April 1935, you might benefit more as a couple by applying for Married Couple’s Allowance instead.

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