Tag Archive | "hmrc"

They Gave Tax the Red Card


Football refs. Love them or hate them you must admit the game couldn’t exist without them. They make a nice chunk of change as well.

Not as much as your top Premiership stars of course, but still a decent pay packet for running about and blowing a whistle on a Saturday afternoon.

Did you know that most referees are actually self employed? That’s right. Just like you, a Premiership referee has to fill in his own tax return or get an accountant to do it.

Some reports have even suggested that refs and players recommend accountants to each other on the pitch.

“That’s a yellow card for you Rooney…I would have given you a red…but you did recommend Contractor Accountants to me…so I will let you off,” is something which could have been said.

However, the HMRC didn’t like the idea of self employed football referees. In their opinion refs should be employed and they should have to pay more tax.

Well, the refs and HMRC couldn’t agree on who was right and who was wrong. The only way to decide was to take the matter to court.

Who won? After a long court battle it is the refs who have taken that red card firmly out of their pocket and shoved it in the face of more tax.

In the courtroom on that day, all of the members of PGMOL were there and dressed in their referee kits with whistles in hand.

As the judge slammed down the hammer and said “NOT GUILTY,” they all started to blow their whistles in celebration.

“Be QUIET,” the judge might have said, because we know how much they like silence in the courtroom.

PGMOL stands for Professional Game Match Officials Limited, and they are representing football referees when it comes to the subject of tax.

The initial £584,000 penalty charge has now been dropped by HMRC. That is one penalty the refs did not want to give, I’m sure.

“That was never a penalty” Alan Hansen might have said from his home in Scotland.

Of course, Alan is no longer on Match of the Day, although he still likes to give his opinion.

“You can’t win anything with kids,” he famously once said. He was wrong.

Here at Contractor Accountants we say…”you can’t give a penalty against a referee.”

We also say that all football referees might just want to visit one of our trusted accountants found on the right side of the page you are reading right now.

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Tax Firm to the Stars…Faced With £50 Million Bill From HMRC


When you do the books for celebrities such as Andrew Lloyd Webber and David Beckham then you expect a bit of the limelight.

It comes with the territory…celebs = red carpets and camera’s flashing, plus millions of pounds going through their bank accounts. You expect a bit of that to rub off on you.

A tax firm that goes by the name Ingenious Media no doubt expected that when people such as Mr Beckham walked into their offices and handed over his accounts.

“I have 1 column for income and 1 column for expenses,” he could have said, and although that is certainly a simple system, it still pays to have experts go over everything and check the numbers are in order.

Just like the accountants and tax firms listed right here at Contractor Accountants DOT Com. They are all methodical in their approach, and even when doing the books for footballers and musical stars, they treat them just like your ordinary contractor.

It doesn’t matter if you have 100 caps for England or 100 Grandad caps in your sock draw…our recommended contractor accountants will treat you all equally and fairly.

Back to the story and it appears that Ingenious Media have been accused by HMRC of helping their famous and wealthy clients pay less tax…using loophole tax breaks by investing in the British Film Industry.

That sounds above board, you would think, but according to HMRC it is far away from being above board.

In fact, they are accusing Ingenious Media of being downright under hand, to the point where they are now demanding $50 million quid in cash, directly into their bank account. No cheques allowed.

Not one to back down, Ingenious Media are fighting back against the allegations and are expected to take the matter into a court of law.

Who knows which side of the hammer a judge will slam down when giving out the verdict? The one thing I do know is that I’m sure they will consider all of the facts and evidence before coming to a decision

It seems the famous are always in the news when it comes to tax, doesn’t it? Especially footballers.

Who can forget Lionel Messi and his messy tax situation, or Ronaldo and his brush with Spanish authorities. They both nearly ended up in prison of course, but they paid a fine instead.

Fortunately our main man Wayne Rooney is well out of this now. Sure, he’s had his tax problems in the past, but now he is at the other side of the Atlantic and keeping his tax affairs all above board.

Apparently when he arrived in Washington DC he said to his wife, Coleen…

“Here we are in Washington…let’s go and visit Donald.”

“Donald Trump?” she replied.

“No silly…Donald Duck!”

No matter which Donald our man Rooney eventually meets…as long as he sticks with Contractor Accountants he will be just fine.

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Can’t Pay? HMRC Will Eventually Take It Away


Money laundering and VAT fraud were two crimes committed by a Preston man way back in 2015. HMRC were not impressed.

As soon as they caught this guy with his hand in the cookie jar they took him directly to court, and not surprisingly he was found guilty.

The judge slammed down that faithful hammer and ordered the Preston man to repay a staggering £590,000 for his crimes.

“I don’t have that kind of cash on me right now,” he is thought to have replied.

HMRC realised that a cheque wasn’t going to land in their mailbox anytime soon, although they did “reserve the right” to chase up payment at a later date.

Fast forward to 2018 and our man in Preston thought he was Scott free. He was living the life of riley with his feet up and playing online poker, day and night.

Then one day recently he struck it big it on the online poker tables…and with a pair of aces in his virtual hand he scooped up £70,000 from the pot and then called it a night.

Once that money was safely transferred into his bank account then he probably thought it was time for a holiday and a new car. Maybe even a brand new rolex to wear on his wrist.

What he didn’t realise is HMRC were patiently lurking in the background. Just waiting for a chance to pounce and get some of that money back.

Money which had been taken fraudulently and had been laundered don’t forget. In the opinion of HMRC and a court of law this was money which needed to be paid back.

So you can imagine the shock our man in Preston felt when he went to the ATM machine only to find a big fat ZERO staring back at him on the screen.

He no doubt went in the bank to see the manager.

“Just what is going on here?” he would have demanded.

“Your money has been taken…by HMRC,” the bank manager would have replied.

Poker winnings or not, HMRC were well within their rights to get that money and divert it into their own bank account. The court was on their side and nothing could stop them.

“He thought he had aced the tournament but we had the better hand in the end,” said a spokesperson for HMRC.

“We will not allow tax fraudsters to enjoy their winnings until they have repaid what they have stolen from the taxpayer,” they went on to add.

Did you know that contractors have their very own “ace in the deck?” They are called contractor accountants and they are there to make sure you stay on the right side of HMRC.

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Glasgow Woman Left “Gobsmacked” After HMRC Insult


When you call the HMRC helpline you expect to be greeted with a friendly adviser at the other end of the line. Don’t you? Not always.

In this particular story a Glasgow woman phoned the HMRC hotline to enquire about a possible tax rebate. So far…nothing out of the ordinary. Just a routine call about a common question that many contractors, freelancers, and self employed people enquire about.

And then…something very much out of the ordinary…

The woman was put on “hold” but it seems the HMRC adviser forgot to press the hold button.

The woman was then left “gobsmacked” when she heard 2 swear words directed at her from the adviser…2 words she heard loud and clear.

Here at Contractor Accountants we are not in the business of reprinting those kind of swear words. We are family friendly. People of all ages read our blog, every day.

All we can say is that the first word began with the letter F and the second word began with the letter B. If you are old enough to work that one out for yourself then you are no doubt as shocked as we were. It really does make you wonder what is going on here?

“Nothing I’d asked warranted such a reaction. I was just gobsmacked when he let rip,” said the Glasgow woman.

“Clearly, he forgot to flick a switch to put me on hold. I heard it loud and clear. It was hurtful,” she went on to add.

Not surprisingly, she decided to file a formal complaint to HMRC complaints department, and after reviewing the recordings of the call they wasted no time in offering a full apology.

A spokesperson for HMRC described the incident as “unacceptable” and that they were “sorry.” They also added that “disciplinary action” would be taken against the not so helpful adviser.

The Glasgow woman was also awarded £730 in compensation, and if you ask me she should use that cash to hire a contractor accountant to sort out her tax rebates in the future.

Did you know you can hire contractor accountants for below £100 a month? Yes you can, no matter where you are in the country.

You could be in London, Cardiff, Belfast…or Glasgow. A contractor accountant is available to sort out your tax affairs and deal with HMRC on your behalf, which means you don’t have to call their helpline.

It’s what smart contractors and freelancers do. They hire accountants to sort out the tax stuff so they can focus on what they do best…running their business and making money.

If you look to the right side of this webpage then you will find the best contractor accountants in the UK right now. We guarantee it.

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Making Tax Digital Makes a Comeback


We all thought making tax digital had been shelved. Officials at HMRC had apparently “pulled the plug” on the idea.

To be honest, most contractors were happy at the news. They didn’t like the idea of filing a tax return 4 times a year…even if it was online.

Well, get ready to be shocked, because word on the street is that making tax digital is making a comeback.

Yes you read that right. While the millions of contractors and self employed of our nation assumed MTD had gone the way of the dinosaurs, it appears HMRC were working behind the scenes, in a secret lab in a undisclosed location, in order to bring back the idea of a quarterly tax return online.

In fact, if recent reports are to be trusted then HMRC already have 35 software suppliers who are chomping at the bit to get this thing “LIVE” and “PUBLIC.”

Not only that, but 18 small businesses have completed a round of testing of the software, and they say everything is almost ready to launch.

When exactly? Next April according to insider sources, where high income contractors will be expected to report their earnings on a quarterly basis.

Hang on a minute. Have we not heard this one before? I seem to remember reporting a few times about how MTD was getting ready to launch…only to have the rug pulled out from under us all at the last minute.

It got shelved so quietly that many pundits wondered if it would ever see the light of day again. Well, here we are once again and yes, the light of day is about to be seen.

If it really is a GREEN LIGHT on project MTD then we can expect chaos in the contracting world.

As I mentioned earlier, most contractors were luke warm at best on the idea of doing a tax return 4 times a year, and there were some who just downright disliked the idea.

Also, let’s not forget that it requires digital financial records to be kept if you have to file your tax returns online, and in my opinion, this is sure to ignite mayhem and confusion among those contractors who try to go it alone.

The solution? A contractor accountant of course…who else? Nobody.

If you have a contractor accountant in your corner then they can become your go-to expert on all things “making tax digital.”

You can even hand everything over to them and allow them to wave their magic wand and get everything setup for you.

You might not agree with MTD…but you can make it a lot easier with a contractor accountant.

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In YOUR Bank Account? HMRC Could Gain New Powers


If the tax man comes a knocking then under current rules they need permission to look in your bank account. No More! Potentailly…

New rules are possibly about to be introduced right now, as we speak, where HMRC will have the power to gain access to your bank account and snoop around…without any permission.

There will be no warning and no “polite request.” Even your bank manager can’t stop them. In fact, the bank manager doesn’t even have to tell you.

It’s thought the new rules would mean HMRC can look at your bank statements and you would never know anything about it.

Under the cover of darkness they pounce, like cat burglars in the night.

The key is left under the mat, no need for a crowbar.

Banks typically have to tell their customers if a tax official wants to snoop around in your bank account.

These usually come under the guise of “information orders” which are official requests from HMRC to look closer at the financials of someone they are investigating.

However, it seems HMRC are becoming frustrated with the amount of time these information orders take to process, and that is why they want to speed up the process by eliminating them once and for all.

In other words, they want the magic keys to your bank account. No permission required. And it looks like they are going to get it.

Uproar is the mood among critics and experts in the media world when they heard about all of this. Many believe it is a breach of privacy.

Take James Daley for example, who is the managing director of Fairer Finance. He recently said – “The system we have contains essential protections for taxpayers privacy and rights. The idea that HMRC can request information from people’s bank, from state agents and other third parties without notifying the individual is shocking.”

HMRC have hit back against the onslaught by reassuring people that nothing has been decided yet, one way or another.

“We are considering a range of options,” said a spokesperson for HMRC.

They also went on to add that even if these new powers were brought in…even then, only a few hundred cases a year would warrant it being actioned.

Still…if you want my opinion then listen closely because I am only going to say this once.

If you are a self employed contractor then it is more important than ever before to get yourself a good accountant.

Sure…you might not be doing anything wrong and you might very well consider yourself a man or woman of great reputation within the community. But…

If HMRC can gain entry to the castle, so to speak, without your knowledge, then if you ask me it is more important than ever before to make sure everything is in tip top shape.

Hire a contractor accountant right now. Do not delay another second.

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“Toughen Up” Say The HCPAC


In a recent meeting the HCPAC (House of Commons Public Accounts Committee) came up with two words…”Toughen Up!”

Who was these two words aimed at? HMRC (Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs).

The meeting was a long meeting, there is no doubt about that, but the conclusion was short, and with those two words there has now been a chain reaction which could see many contractors and digital traders fall foul of HMRC.

According to HCPAC it is you, the average contractor, as well as thousands of digital traders who trade on platforms such as eBay and Amazon, who are avoiding their VAT (Value Added Tax) duties.

Could notorious tax hound (Philip Hammond) be the chief architect behind this new push for “more tax?” While he isn’t officially on the HCPAC, there are some experts out there who claim he is the one “pulling the strings.”

So the memo to HRMC is crystal clear…”Toughen Up” and crackdown on those tax dodgers who are depriving the government bank account of millions, and perhaps, even billions.

One pundit claims that somewhere between 1 billion pounds and 1.5 billion pounds worth of VAT is being missed out on, although it is difficult to know the exact figure until all the money is collected.

It could take a while, because as we know, many of these online eBay and Amazon traders fly under the radar and cover their tracks…avoiding their VAT duties, year after year.

Hard working contractors such as yourself…obviously YOU don’t avoid your duties and you do everything by the law.

You fill in your tax return and send it off on time, every time.

You get your tax bill and say “do you take a cheque? Every time.

You pay your National Insurance every time.

You pay your VAT every time.

The problem is that Philip Hammond will never stop, ever, until he has 100% of your income safely in the government bank account.

These new tax grabs are becoming more common, and as Mr Hammond becomes more sophisticated in his approach, he can easily pull the wool over your eyes and bring in new laws and regulations without any attention.

This is why you MUST hire a contractor accountant. Even if you are NOT a contractor.

If you are reading this news story and your business is trading on eBay or Amazon then you should also make it your main priority to hire an accountant right away.

Don’t delay, because Philip Hammond is on to you…which means you need to know how to legally pay less tax and beat him at his own game.

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Accountant Jailed and Then Banned by FCA


Not a week goes by without stories of accountants getting themselves into trouble, both inside and outside the office.

This week it is the turn of a former high powered accountant who did the books for some pretty well known and famous clients.

Unfortunately, this particular accountant was caught with his hand in the cookie jar, so to speak, and this led to an appearance in front of a courtroom full of his peers and a judge (with hammer firmly in hand).

It was all to do with a “film tax scheme,” something I’ve reported about before of course. Anyway, the judge slammed down his or her trusty hammer and with a few short words sentenced the accountant to 8 years behind bars at HMP Highpoint in Suffolk.

You might think that would be enough punishment for the accountant, having to do 8 years of “hard time” at her majesty’s service, but some people are not done with him yet.

While the accountant is folding laundry and doing press-ups in Suffolk, a team at FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) headquarters have decided to rub even more salt in his wounds…by banning the accountant from doing anything related to accounting once he gets out of the slammer.

In other words, don’t expect to see this particular accountant listed on our website anytime soon, because as you are no doubt aware, we only list TRUSTED accountants on ContractorAccountants.com.

That’s right. If an accountant is sitting in a jail cell or is currently banned by the FCA then you can be rest assured they will NOT be listed here on this website.

We only feature accountants who conduct their business in a legit way, so you can feel safe in hiring them to do your books…typically for less than £100 a month.

Back to the story, and things didn’t get any better for the accountant in prison. Not only did the FCA shun him, but a confiscation order was also made against him, to the tune of £1.8 million quid.

Apparently this accountant had been living the high life before his prison days, sunning himself on a yacht in Monaco and rubbing shoulders with Hollywood stars such as George Clooney in pre production meetings for movies such as “Three Kings.”

Many wealthy investors jumped onboard and happily invested in some of these blockbuster movies, safe in the knowledge that any “losses” made would be secured against tax relief.

One of the film companies which the accountant was involved in spent a cool £5.7 million and made significant losses on 2 British films…a move which alerted HMRC to investigate further.

The trail soon led to a series of discoveries by HMRC, such as suspicious tax rebate claims, fake invoices, and bogus diary entries, and of course, this was all the HMRC needed to take the accountant to court.

How can you, the hard working contractor avoid these dodgy accountants? My advice is to only do business with the accountants you see listed immediately to your right, at the side of the page.

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“The Best Kebab in Town!” Said The Accountant


There was a small kebab shop in Camden where (legend has it) accountants lined up to enjoy the best kebab in town.

“The is the best damn kebab I have ever tasted!” said one accountant, and he meant every word.

So it was ironic when that very same kebab shop recently was investigated and prosecuted by HMRC for…yes, you guessed it…NOT paying tax.

All of those accountants who lined up in their shop, day after day, month after month, and year after year, and not once did the owners think to ask for help.

“A years worth of free kebabs for taking a look at my books?” could have been one offer put on the table.

or even…

“I will give you the recipe to my top secret chilli sauce…if you will do my tax return.”

Now of course, some of those accountants would have visited the kebab shop after a night of drinking, and would have been in no fit state to give tax advice

but some…

They would have been stone cold sober and just popped in for lunch, with a briefcase in one hand and a £10 note in the other.

That would have been the perfect opportunity to ask for tax advice or for the accountant to write down on a piece of paper…

“Go to ContractorAccountants.com – Look for me on there…”

But now that time has gone.

What appears to have happened is the uncle and nephew team who were running that kebab shop in Camden have been banned from running another kebab shop for the next 14 years.

The best kebab shop in town…no more.

The 53 and 26 year old were found guilty by HMRC of suppressing takings and sales that were not recorded on VAT forms. They also had other tax related issues that were not exactly playing by the rules.

Could an accountant have stepped in and helped them? You bet they could. In fact, all it would have took is a few minutes to get them on the straight and narrow. The kind of time it takes to prepare a tasty doner kebab with a bit of mint and chilli sauce…all served on a fresh pitta or naan bread.

No accountant did step forward though, and what eventually happened is the Kebab shop owed nearly £300,000 in VAT, Corporation Tax and Penalties.

So now accountants in Camden will have to find a new kebab shop, and as you are no doubt aware, that is not an easy task.

My advice to all accountants out there…when you do find a good kebab shop, make sure they are paying the tax man.

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500,000 Could Pay “Top Whack” Tax Rate


If you thought top rate income tax was just reserved for the rich and famous, then think again, as experts warn it could affect half a million.

Come to think of it…those “super rich” playboys and playgirls often get away scot free. It is you, the hard working contractor and freelancer who is left to pick up the tab, yet again.

While they are swanning around on their super yachts and tanning their cheeks on the beaches of Southern France…it is the British contractor who earns 6 figures a year that is being hit with 45% income rate tax.

As we speak, there is 393,000 people in the UK who pay this 45% rate on every pound they make. However, experts are predicting that around 500,000 people will soon fall under the 150k banner, which means they will also be subject to the 45% rate.

Many of these extra “top earners” will be contractors and freelancers of course. Just ordinary self employed business owners who want to do their best for themselves and their families.

In an ideal world they could bank their 6 figures and keep all of the profits, but this is far from an ideal world. This is a world where if you don’t pay HMRC, then expect them to be knocking at your front door, and nobody wants that.

A leading accountancy firm predicts that in just 5 years time over 500,000 people will be paying 45% tax. Now, more than ever before, do contractors need the services of a professional if you ask me.

What kind of professional? A contractor accountant is exactly the kind of professional that you need, especially if your income is currently or going to be around that £150,000 threshold.

A contractor accountants knowledge and expertise could take you just below the threshold (legally of course), which means you won’t be part of the 500,000.

“I’m not one of the half million,” you can shout…”It’s all thanks to my contractor accountant,” you will add.

Extra money in your pocket and a smile on your face. That is the kind of benefits enjoyed by the thousands who hire a contractor accountant on a monthly basis to look after their finances.

Not sure which contractor accountant to choose? Well, fortunately you are on the right website right now, as we specialise in bringing you the best contractor accountants that are open and waiting for your business right now.

Many of these trusted contractor accountants offer all of their years of experience and knowledge for 1 low monthly fee. Simply look to the right of the page NOW and discover the perfect match for you.

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129 Premiership Stars Accused of Tax Avoidance


It was only a few weeks ago that Wayne Rooney was under scrutiny for tax avoidance…well, now you can add 129 more players to the list.

Not just any football players either. These are top of the line Premiership Stars we are talking about here. The kind you see on Sky Sports and BT Sports week in and week out, diving around and hugging each other when a goal is scored.

Yes, it is those very stars who are now being looked at very closely by HMRC. 129 to be exact, although the names are yet to be released.

What we do know as of right now is one player on the list is a very famous ex Manchester United Star.

Apparently, this former red put nearly 33.5 million quid into something called a Kingsbridge scheme, in what HMRC are claiming was tax avoidance. The taxman is now trying to get at least 70% of that cash back.

Are these just helpless football players who didn’t understand what they were doing, or are they cold and calculated…ready to avoid tax at all costs? Many experts are claiming it is the latter, and with the help of clever accountants they are avoiding millions in tax every single year.

Of the 129 Premiership Stars on the list, it is estimated that a total of £250 million was put into the Kingsbridge scheme, although some pundits say this could just be the start of an avalanche that might send shockwaves through the footballing world.

Another of the clubs named on the list is Liverpool, so we can be sure that it will be headline news around the world when everything is eventually revealed.

Which brings me to an important point. In my opinion, I think there is a fine line between hiring a good accountant and hiring an accountant that is “too good.”

Take your average contractor for example, who might not be able to hit a barn door with the ball at their feet and probably wouldn’t do very well if they took to the pitch at Old Trafford or Anfield.

What contractors do have in common with Premiership Stars is the desire to pay less tax. That is something everybody wants.

The difference is that doing it legally won’t get you in trouble with HMRC, while doing things that are considered shady like investing in offshore schemes, well, that will get you in trouble.

That is why you want to be careful of accountants who try to claim you won’t pay any tax at all. It just isn’t possible (legally) and I reckon some of these football players might have been taken in by the hype.

Instead, what you want to be doing is hiring a contractor accountant who is good, and can save you tax (legally), but also keeps you on the right side of the law.

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Phish Don’t Swim…They Steal


Phishing has nothing to do with going out to the canal with your rods and bait. A recent memo from HMRC reminds us of that.

I’ve reported before on how innocent contractors are getting dodgy emails and texts from scammers who pretend to be from HMRC.

The official name for this scam is “phishing,” and according to HMRC there has been 1700 reports of it during the last 2 weeks.

What happens is that an email lands in your inbox or a text comes through on your phone. “We are from HMRC,” they say, “you have a tax refund,” is what they use to bait you.

Unfortunately, many contractors fall for the scam hook, line and sinker, and are reeled in by the promise of receiving a cheque in the post or deposit in their bank account. Who wouldn’t want a few hundred quid from HMRC? Most people would, and that is exactly why this phishing scam works so well.

HMRC and Action Fraud have just released a statement warning all self employed people about the need to be vigilant and aware.,

“HMRC will never use texts to tell you about a tax rebate or penalty or ever ask you for payment in this way,” they warned. “telephone numbers and text messages can easily be spoofed. You should never trust the number you see on your telephones display,” they went on to add.

Bizarrely, one way these phishers have been getting innocent contractors to hand over their cash is through Apple iTunes vouchers.

What they do is say that a large amount of tax is owed, but, it can only be paid off through vouchers for the iTunes store. Many people have fallen for it too, which just goes to show that scammers are becoming very convincing.

Another way they con you out of your money is by sending out emails that look like they are from HMRC and direct people to a website that appears to be “official” but isn’t.

Once on that website, innocent contractors put in their bank account details and other personal information, and then these con men and woman have a field day.

“Plenty of Phish,” is what I would say to all contractors and freelancers out there. Be careful.

Do you know what though? This could be easily avoided if you just hire a contractor accountant.

A good contractor accountant handles all of your tax affairs for you, and they know the difference between a phish and a fish.

No charlatan can fool these accountants, which means you can relax and not have to worry about being scammed.

Hire a contractor accountant right now, and make those phishers say “wow…better move on to the next person.” They won’t mess with you anymore.

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IT Contractors – From Zero to £500 a Day…In 90 Days


IT contracting has always been profitable in the UK, but to go from nothing to £500 a day (and beyond) in only 90 days? You must be kidding.

Actually not, because as a recent survey quite clearly points out, the average new IT contractor on the scene will be making an average salary within roughly 3 months.

That is £500 a day if you didn’t know, and it just goes to show that tapping away at your keyboard and offering all of your computer related knowledge to companies, well, it pays off and gives you the chance to profit.

So the average IT contractor is taking home £500 in his or her pockets every night, stuffed full of cash…but did you know that some people in the IT industry are making even more? Yes they are.

According to the survey, 8% of IT contractors make more than £700 a day, which isn’t bad money if you can get it. No surprises then that so many employees are quitting their jobs and going out on their own, into the world of self employment and IT contracting jobs.

“Do you want cash or would you prefer a cheque?” is what those companies say to IT contracting professionals.

“I don’t care, as long as I can buy a Rolex with it,” is the response from the hot shot IT contractor.

Yes, this is definitely a boom time to be self employed and involved in IT, and if you play your cards right then you could soon be rolling up to jobs in a brand new Ferrari.

However, while enjoying the six or seven figure lifestyle does have its perks, there are also things you need to consider before splashing the cash.

Sure, having a wad of banknotes in your pocket all day, every day, will make you feel like a million bucks, but have you considered paying the tax man their share? Unfortunately many IT contractors completely overlook this important step.

It’s all very well getting £500 a day…or even £1000 a day, but when you think you are above the law then you are going to be in for a rude shock.

HMRC are coming down on IT contractors like a ton of bricks is what I’ve been hearing, and even if there are only a few mistakes on your tax return then expect them to come after you like a gazelle in the wild.

They are hungry lions you see, and although you might be a rich gazelle, the fact of the matter remains that no matter how much cash you have in the bank you must make sure you pay the right amount of tax and everything is in order.

That is why I advise every IT contractor in the UK to hire an accountant.

Not just any accountant…a contractor accountant. Someone who is well schooled in the art of doing books for IT contractors.

So take a look around this site for the best contractor accountants, and then make sure you hire them quick.

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Caffe No Tax – “Not a Bean”


If you sold £288 million pounds worth of lattes last year, then how much tax would you expect to pay? “Not a bean,” is an answer that would be surprising.

However, the popular coffee shop called “Caffe Nero” have apparently done exactly that, to the point where on their official tax form for the last 10 years…there has not been a single penny paid to HMRC.

“That is strange,” many pundits have commented, especially when you consider that other similar companies are paying quite a bit of cash in corporation tax, year in and year out.

Even our very own hard working contractors. The very people who are the foundation of British economic success. Well, they are paying more tax than Caffe Nero, apparently, which just isn’t right if you ask me.

Sure, you can hire a contractor accountant to save you money on your tax return, which many people who visit this site do (just look to the right of the page for the best accountants), but it still doesn’t feel right that many of these big companies are getting away scott free.

Italian Coffee Holdings is the name that officially has been registered with companies house, although “Caffe Nero” is what your average man and woman on the street will know them by.

Some people march in there first thing in the morning, eager to get served their morning latte before rushing off to the office, another busy day on the cards no doubt.

Others, on the other hand, are more relaxed in their approach to coffee drinking. They stroll in at 11am on a weekday, put their feet up and enjoy a flat white. “Caffe Nero sure does make good coffee,” they say.

They also hire good accountants it seems, who are no doubt working around the clock to ensure that Caffe Nero is always the coffee shop that pays “tax zero.”

Who knows exactly what is going on here though? For all we know Italian Coffee Holdings, Caffe Nero and the accountants who they hire…well, they could be doing everything by the book and by the law. Only a court and a judge can decide otherwise.

Usually, corporation tax comes in at 19% on the profits that a company makes during the year, although Italian Coffee Holdings have paid nothing because they actually recorded a loss.

That’s right. While Caffe Nero are doing nearly £300 million quid in coffee sales per year, the company behind them are supposedly losing money.

Just what are they doing with all that money? Do they pay their servers £200 an hour or something? Perhaps all of you IT contractors should scrap the computer for the coffee machine, and don the Caffe Nero uniform to make the real money.

“Would you like a donut with your coffee, sir?” is what you will say, safe in the knowledge you are going to earn £2000 for a 10 hour shift.

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