Watch out for tax scams targeting young people this Spring
We love the month of May; the weather is getting better and everywhere’s looking much greener. Spring has certainly sprung, but there has been a warning to young people from HMRC to watch out for Springtime tax refund scams around this time.

Criminals often target young individuals or the elderly as these groups of people are likely to be less familiar with the UK tax system. During the months of April and May, criminals often bombard taxpayers with tax refund scams at the same time as genuine rebates are processed by HMRC.

In the spring of 2018, approximately 250,000 reports of tax scams were received by HMRC.

Individuals have been warned to be wary of text messages, calls and voicemails purporting to be from HMRC. These are often designed to extract personal or financial information from the taxpayer.

Angela MacDonald, Head of Customer Services at HMRC, said: 'We are determined to protect honest people from these fraudsters who will stop at nothing to make their phishing scams appear legitimate.

'HMRC is currently shutting down hundreds of phishing sites a month. If you receive one of these emails or texts, don't respond and report it to HMRC so that more online criminals are stopped in their tracks.'

If you’re worried you may have been targeted, or would like to know more, visit Action Fraud. 
Employment Benefits in Kind Returns
Do you provide your employees with any benefits as a perk of the job, or make regular payments to directors that could be classed as a loan?
If the answer is yes then as an employer you are required to complete the required forms and submit them to your tax office by 6 July 2019.

If any company directors have an overdrawn account over £10,000 at any point in the year where loans were made and not repaid, or the dividends are not being declared on the 2019 tax return it needs to be reported.

Most benefits in kind attract Class 1A NIC and form P11D(b) is used to calculate the Class 1A NIC due by the employer.

On the P11D forms, the benefits have to be divided into two types to facilitate the tax and National Insurance calculations that follow.  Some items reported on the form do not create a tax charge, others do.

Tax and National Insurance is not charged if the expenses are wholly and exclusively for business.   However any other Benefits in Kind (company cars, medical insurance etc) would need to be reported.

The Class 1A NIC charged on company benefits provided by an employer in the year ended 5 April 2019 is due for payment on 19 July 2019.  If it’s not paid by that date, the tax office will charge interest.

Do not ignore this and get the returns filed as soon as possible as there is a penalty of £100 (for every 50 employees) if the forms are not received by 6 July 2019, with an additional £100 penalty for each further month late.

We would be pleased to offer assistance in completing these forms so please contact us to see how we can help you.  
Is your 2017/18 tax return still outstanding?
If your personal tax return for the year to 5 April 2018 is still outstanding then you will need to file this with HMRC as soon as possible to ensure that you do not receive the daily penalties that will commence from 1 May 2019.

You will already have received a £100 fine for late filing of your return and you are being charged interest on the amount of tax that is still outstanding, as well as a 5% penalty of the tax owed.

As from the 1 May 2019 you will start to receive daily penalties of £10 per day for up to 90 days, or until your tax return is filed.

Therefore if your tax return still remains outstanding on 29 July 2019 you will receive the maximum £900 penalty plus the penalties mentioned above.

If the return is still outstanding after this date then you will receive an additional penalty of £300 or 5% of the tax that is due, whichever is the higher. This is again in addition to all of the penalties mentioned above.

As you can see this level of fines could have a serious impact on your cash flow and your business so the message is easy…..

Don’t delay file your tax return today.

We can help you do this so please contact us to discuss your requirements.
Check your pension forecast
You can check how much State Pension you will receive by accessing your online personal tax account. It will tell you how many years of National Insurance Contributions (NIC) you have made and if there are any gaps in your NIC record.

You need 35 full years to get the full State Pension, but will get some State Pension if you have 10 complete NIC years.

You can make up gaps in your NIC record over the last six years by paying voluntary class 3 NIC at £15 per week. If you are self-employed you can pay Class 2 NIC at £3 per week, even if your profits are below the threshold where you have to pay Class 2 NIC.

Get in touch - If you'd like to find out more about how we can help you and your business pay less tax, generate more profits and create long-term wealth for you and your family, please get in touch now