Tag Archive | "income tax"

Thinking of Merging Your Business? HMRC has New Guidance

HMRC has recently updated some of its regulations when it comes to company mergers. So, if you’re contemplating partnering up with a new company and integrating your team, or simply transferring ownership, there are new rules that you need to apply.

The detail is in whether or not it’s a merger, or a succession.

What’s the difference? 

Apparently, it’s to do with ensuring new payroll records are correct, and how data is transferred over. So, your loyal employee with 10 years under their belt may show up to HMRC as a new employee, without any previous tax details, meaning they may be incorrectly taxed. 

The new update stipulates:

If HMRC provides the restructured business with a new employer reference or you are moving to a new payroll system, businesses must:

Send a leaver Full Payment Submission (FPS) with all details such as YTD pay, and tax details. You don’t need to provide a P45, but give HMRC the details up to the date of the change. Then send HMRC the new FPS with all the new details and employer reference. This must be done in the correct order, sending the old FPS before you send HMRC the new one.

Restart the employments for each employee and return YTD figures to zero.

Record the start date for the new payroll and indicate on the starter declaration, C for BR codes or codes starting with a D prefix and B for any other code.

If the employee has any company benefits, you must submit P11D and P11D(b) under your new employer reference, containing the information from both the old and new employer references. 

If your employee moved to a new payroll under the same employer reference, you must continue to operate PAYE and report information under the same employer reference. 

Confused? We are? That’s why we suggest doing the smart thing, and contacting either the HMRC employer helpline, or, better yet, you could contact one of our fabulous accountants and have them take the pain away and let them take care of it for you. 

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“Radical Overhaul” of Tax System is Needed, Say Think Tank

A left wing think tank have described the current tax system as “unfair and outdated.” So should we listen to them or ignore them?

According to them, if we listen to them and do everything they say…then 90 Billion Pounds Sterling will be raised for the Government.

How? They reckon if we start taxing capital gains tax at the same rate as income tax, then everybody at the government will be laughing to the bank and the UK will become richer.

If we do exactly what the Think Tank says, right now, then in 5 years time that 90 Billion Pounds will be a reality. That works out at…

15 Billion Pounds A Year!

With a General Election potentially around the corner then we can expect the subject of tax to be headline news for the coming months.

No doubt parties such as Labour and the Liberal Democrats will be holding hands with this left wing think tank and shouting from the rooftops about “Capital Gains Tax.”

Heck…the Raving Loony Party might even join them as well.

What about you, the hard working and high earning contractor? Should you be hoping for more tax?

If you are a raving loony, then yes.

But if you have any ounce of common sense, then no.

In fact, you should be hoping any future General Election results in you paying less tax. Whether it be income tax or capital gains tax.

But you can’t trust these politicians. We know that for a fact.

They promise and promise. But then leave you looking like an idiot when you are waiting for them to deliver results.

The only person you can trust is yourself. So trust yourself and leave the future of your tax in the hands of a contractor accountant.

Forget about Think Tanks and forget about politicians.

Instead, reach out to a trusted contractor accountant right now.

The ship is sinking. There is no doubt about that. And right now, as we speak…

A Contractor Accountant is handing you a life jacket.

Will you take it?

Do you want to save money on income tax?

Do you want to save money on Capital Gains tax?

If you answered yes and you are nodding your head in agreement then look to the right hand side of the page, right now, where you can find details of our recommended contractor accountants.

AKA…The Best Contractor Accountants in the UK.

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Scotland Embraces New Income Tax System

If you are a contractor in Scotland then get ready for a new income tax system. It is now in force and ready to be assigned to your pay packet.

Scottish MPs recently lined up to sign their name to the bill that now separates Scotland from the rest of the UK…when it comes to income tax rates and bands. Is everybody happy though? Not exactly.

That’s because some self employed Scottish people (including contractors) will actually end up paying more tax as a result of the new system.

I predicted all of this of course, in a blog post a few months ago where I first commented on the plans to change the Scottish income tax system.

In that post I mentioned that not everybody would be pleased with the changes, and that some contractors might even consider a move South of the Border to friendlier tax rates.

Not only that, but I also made a point to highlight the fact that every single Scottish contractor needs to hire a contractor accountant.

With these new tax changes, and with some contractors expected to be paying a whopping 45% tax…I reckon that a contractor accountant is now more important than ever before.

Don’t even try to do the books yourself anymore. It just isn’t worth it and will almost guarantee you lose money. Be smart and get a professional on your side…a contractor accountant.

Back to the new income tax system in Scotland, and many of the Scottish MPs who signed their name to the bill are very pleased with themselves.

In their opinion, all of this extra funding will be great for local services…and let’s face it, is going to raise more cash for their wages, no doubt.

It seems to be the move that politicians go to these days when they want extra money. “Just shake down the contractors,” they say, and with those words a bill is drawn up that changes the tax system, and in no time at all it has the signatures required to become law.

Who can forget our very own Philip Hammond and his plan to go after every single self employed person in the UK. “MORE TAX,” is what he demanded, while slamming his fist down on the table and making everybody in the room cower in fear.

However, the brave men and women contractors did not cower away from Mr Hammond, and in fact, they stood firm and refused to back down to his outrageous demands for more tax.

In the end it was Philip Hammond who backed down and went back to his corner. He had no choice, although some predict he will try it on again in the near future.

My advice to Scottish contractors is to stand firm and let your voice be heard. Go to the streets of Glasgow, Edinburgh, Inverness and Fife if you have to, and demand that your taxes be lowered.

If that fails, then just make sure you get yourself the best contractor accountant in Scotland. Something which can be found right here at this website.

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Company Boss Avoids Prison for Tax Cheating

We’ve heard about how accountants are avoiding prison when they get into trouble…it’s now the turn of company bosses.

That’s right. A tax cheat boss who owned a plumbing company in Stockport recently got caught by HMRC, where they found that over a 10 year period he had failed to pay approximately £65,000 to the government.

Not only that, but the plumber also neglected to send a cheque to the VAT man between the years of 2004 and 2014, and during that time only paid £750 in tax.

This is despite his plumbing business doing very well during that time, where investigators found that he spent nearly £50,000 on advertising and bought a flashy van for the business, a VW transporter that retails for around £25,000.

It also emerged that he wasn’t doing badly when it came to his personal life, with flashy cars and private school fees being the norm during those 10 years, while at the same time HMRC received barely anything.

An Audi RS6 found its way into his garage with a reported cost of nearly £90,000, while a cheaper BMW 116d SE was purchased…as a backup to the Audi no doubt.

£65,000 was the amount the company boss spent to send his children to private school. It’s good to see they are getting a good education, it’s just unfortunate he didn’t pay the government first, which is what everyone should do of course.

It doesn’t matter if you are a self employed business owner, freelance worker, or contracting professional. Just get yourself an accountant and do everything above board is my advice.

Appearing in court, the company owner admitted that he had evaded tax, VAT, and national insurance contributions, and before an onlooking jury, the judge slammed down the hammer and gave the boss 2 years in the slammer.

However, those 2 years were quickly suspended, which means he will avoid going to prison right now, and as long as the boss doesn’t do anything similar in the future then it should never come to that.

The plumber did get 300 hours of unpaid work as a punishment though, as well as a 3 month curfew where he wasn’t allowed to leave the house after a certain time.

The judge and jury also decided that all of the £65,000 in lost taxes must be paid back by the plumbing company owner, and if that didn’t happen within 3 months then he could very well find himself having to visit the local nick and spend a bit of time.

I think the message is clear here…pay your taxes and you will be fine, but don’t pay your taxes and you might just have your very own day in court.

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Ronaldo in Court Over Tax Charges – Faces Jail

Regular readers of this blog will be aware of the Cristiano Ronaldo tax saga that has been going on since last year. Well, this week he was in court.

The Real Madrid star took to the dock and faced prosecutors who claim he has evaded almost £14 million pounds in tax. If found guilty in a Spanish court of law, then it’s possible Ronaldo could be doing some jail time, with a potential 3 and half years banged up on the cards.

Of course, because Ronaldo doesn’t have previous, then it’s unlikely that he is going to end up in the slammer if found guilty, but it is a possibility.

Also, you have the recent case of Barcelona player Lionel Messi who was found guilty of tax evasion in Spain. While some pundits were saying that he faced jail time, in the end all that happened is that he got a fine and had to pay back taxes.

I’m sure Messi didn’t enjoy writing out that cheque, but when you’ve got millions in the bank and don’t have to join the prison football team, then I’m sure the cheque got paid out to the Spanish government pretty quickly.

So will Ronaldo also be writing out a cheque? Right now it’s difficult to say, mainly because although the Real Madrid star did appear in court, he didn’t actually make any statement, although in a previous statement issued to the press he did mention that there has been no wrong doing on his part.

This court case in Madrid (where no guilt or innocence has been proven remember) has really caught the attention of media outlets worldwide, with one onlooker noting that 40 TV crews and 100 journalists were waiting outside of the court for a chance to speak with Ronaldo.

However, it appears the Portuguese footballer is as elusive off the pitch as he is on it, because he managed to dodge the media both entering and leaving the court, before being whisked away by his driver and back to his mansion in the suburbs of Madrid.

So what exactly are prosecutors claiming that Ronaldo did wrong? Apparently, they are saying he formed a complicated company structure, with the help of accountants, to hide income that was generated from image rights. Some commentators who are following the case closely also note that income may have been sent to offshore accounts in places like the British Virgin Islands.

Who knows exactly what has gone on here, but what I do know is that while many contractors in the UK might be reading about this story with interest, they are way more concerned about their business and income.

No matter if Ronaldo is proven innocent or he finds himself in jail for 3 and half years, the only thing you really care about is getting a good contractor accountant…something which you can find right here.

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Cristiano Ronaldo Investigated Over £120 Million of Tax

Not a week goes by without a big company or famous celebrity being accused of tax avoidance. This week it is the turn of Real Madrid star Ronaldo.

The richest footballer in the world has been accused by Spanish authorities of not paying £120 million in tax on income he has received in image rights, between the years of 2009 and 2011.

This has led officials in Spain to demand a large scale investigation against the Real Madrid player, and if successful, something tells me that the Spanish government will be getting a big cheque through the post from Mr Ronaldo’s accountant.

However, let’s just be clear here…right now nothing has been proven in a court of law, and as we speak this is all just allegations against Ronaldo. It could very well be that he has done nothing wrong and that this will be easily proven.

It isn’t the first time that a high profile football figure has come under scrutiny from Spanish officials, as last year Jose Mourinho was investigated about alleged tax avoidance while he was manager of Real Madrid.

I don’t think anything ended up coming of that investigation, although it’s difficult to say for sure because the result of these tax investigations very rarely get reported in the press, especially when innocence is proven or a small settlement is reached.

Back to Cristiano Ronaldo and reports are suggesting that Spanish Authorities believe that money was diverted to a shell company in the British Virgin Islands, and that approximately £120 million of tax has been avoided.

When asked about the issue previously, Ronaldo has denied any wrongdoing, even to the point where his agent released tax records for the footballer showing his exact incomings and outgoings.

I’m sure that Ronaldo hires a good accountant and makes sure everything is recorded accurately. Who knows, he might even keep details of all his earnings in a simple notebook? I’m sure it’s a bit more complicated than that, and his accountant no doubt uses the latest accountancy software to keep everything up-to-date.

Let’s wait to see what happens on this one anyway. At the end of the day, the Spanish government are yet to launch any kind of investigation and it might never happen. Of course, Ronaldo might be completely innocent and this could quickly be proven.

I’m sure everything will get sorted out quickly so that Ronaldo can get back to what he does best, playing football and showing the world his skills.

If you are a contractor then you might not have the skills of Ronaldo, and you probably don’t make as much money as him, but you still need an accountant, which you can find right here on this website.

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MP’s on Tax – “Go after Footballers and Super Rich”

It seems that Premiership footballers and the super rich are really having a good time recently, whether it be big money moves or chilling on a super yacht.

Well, the party could soon be over, because a committee of MP’s have been locked away in secret meetings over the last week or two, and now they have emerged with a clear message…”go after footballers and the super rich.”

What they are basically saying is that they want HMRC to look more closely at exactly what is going on with these millionaires and billionaires.

Particular concerns are footballers who set-up offshore companies to funnel money out of the country and business people who live most of their time and do business in the UK, but “technically” live in places like Monaco or Switzerland, in order to pay less tax.

Firstly, let me just say that I am not accusing anyone of anything here, and these kind of stories are simply what you hear about now and again. Now if MP’s are wanting to do something then there might very well be something to it all, but at the end of the day the only people who have the power to prove guilt or innocence is HMRC.

However, they do make good news stories at times, and at the end of the day, if there are Premiership stars and the super rich getting away with not paying tax in the UK, then I am sure many people will want to see justice handed out.

I seem to remember that Jose Mourinho, the Manchester United manager, had some kind of allegations made against him regarding offshore businesses, but in the end I don’t think anything came of it.

MP’s are saying that Premiership Clubs are not doing enough to co-operate with HMRC though, in a time when many see communication as a priority.

Right now there are 43 Premiership players that HMRC are making inquiries about, as well as 8 agents and 12 clubs.

Let’s wait to see what happens with this one, it could all come to nothing of course, especially if some of those players end up getting a big money move to China.

As many of you are no doubt aware, it was Diego Costa who was recently offered £30 million a year after tax by a Chinese club. Not bad money if you can get it, although he appears to be staying for now.

For all the contractors out there, £30 million a year might sound a bit far fetched, but whatever your income it’s always a good idea to get a qualified accountant to handle everything for you.

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£1.1m Tax Paid by eBay, They Made Over 1 Billion

We all know that big companies are getting away with paying tax in the UK, but £1.1m in tax from eBay? Surely this is a joke.

It gets even funnier when eBay themselves have announced that their revenue in the UK was £1.1bn last year.

They have 372 staff who mainly work in offices throughout London, and have been allowing online sellers to advertise their goods for years. Once a sale is made, either through an online auction or fixed price sale, then eBay takes a percentage of the sale for allowing the seller to list on their site.

When you consider that millions of Brits use eBay on a daily basis, then it’s easy to see why they are now a Billion pound company here, it’s just unfortunate there is virtually none of that money going back into the UK.

So how are they getting away with it you might be wondering? At the end of the day, it all comes down to very clever accountants who know the system and use it to their advantage.

Some experts have claimed that eBay use a very complex corporate structure that ultimately sends the majority of income into divisions of the company that operate overseas.

I suppose it’s nice when you can pay millions of pounds to accountants who can then plan out this type of structure, I’m sure this is a luxury that many contractors and self employed freelancers would like to have.

This really brings us to the question…Are eBay actually doing anything wrong, or are they just fairly gaming the system? There are many people who argue that it is the responsibility of a company to pay as little tax as possible legally, and if eBay have worked out a way to do achieve this they have every right.

To a point I agree with that statement, but it does become frustrating when you see these very big companies like eBay, Amazon, Google and Microsoft, who are basically paying no tax at all into the UK system.

I think the responsibility on this should come to the government, who must step in and investigate further as to what companies such as eBay are doing to only pay £1.1m in tax. They should then take appropriate action to stop it from happening.

This might not be possible though, because if those clever accountants are always one step ahead it means that many companies can enjoy operating in the UK basically tax free.

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Over 100 BBC Presenters in Tax Avoidance Scandal

Is it really surprising to learn that more than 100 BBC presenters are suspected of trying to con the tax man? Of course not.

With the BBC, which is all funded by the UK public don’t forget, it just seems like there is one scandal after another, and if the high wages are not enough, they are now trying to cheat their way out of paying tax. I bet they thought it would be easy to get away with…they were wrong.

If you didn’t know already, the vast majority of BBC presenters are employed which means they are paid a wage and are expected to pay the higher tax band if their salary goes above a certain amount per year.

When you consider that most of these presenters are paid 6 figures a year for not doing a lot, then they should be paying a lot of tax.

Well, this whole scandal seems to involve the fact that many presenters are trying to become self employed or contractors, and then forming their own company to pay the money into. It’s then a simple case of working things out so they end up paying less tax.

However, the HMRC have started to catch on to what is happening at the BBC, and recently 2 presenters have been found guilty of avoiding tax and ordered to pay extra tax and National Insurance.

This has led to over 100 more presenters being investigated, which could ultimately lead to millions of pounds of back payments ordered to be paid.

I just find it ironic that a company funded by the UK public, has employees that are basically trying to avoid paying money back into the system.

Surely this is a wake up call to everyone in the UK about the BBC and if they want to continue as a company then they should do it independently by generating their own money through advertising or other revenue just like any other TV channel out there.

The UK public should not have to fund these people anymore. It’s just scandal after scandal and we have all had enough.

Not to mention that very average TV presenters are being paid 6 figure, and even 7 figure salaries to sit in a chair and read from a script for an hour or two a week.

I’m sure if the BBC had to run itself like a normal company those salaries would quickly become 4 figures and 5 figures, with the vast majority of presenters finding themselves down the job centre. It might be a while until that happens though.

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Higher Income Tax in Wales Should be Reduced Experts Say

Research by experts at the Cardiff Business School has come to the conclusion taxing high earners is not the best way forward.

In fact, the research went on to find that by reducing the current rate of higher income tax from 40% to 30% would actually bring in an additional £500 million a year,.

Why you might be wondering? Because it would attract more high earners into Wales from places such as England and Scotland many of the experts believe, which in turn brings in more revenue even at 30%.

This wouldn’t be immediate though, and the experts at Cardiff Business School predict for the first few years revenue would actually fall which is to be expected as people won’t move straight away.

However, by 10 years the research shows that the £500 million a year figure should be reached, which is some pretty decent income for the Welsh government.

The main concern I have is that most of the people in charge won’t be able to look past the fall in revenue over the first three years, so ultimately I say it might be difficult for this thing to get moving.

As the time of writing, the higher income tax bracket of 40% in Wales is paid on income between £43,001 and £150,000.

In my opinion, that 10% reduction would make a difference, and you could see umbrella contractors and professionals who earn five or six figures a year to definitely consider moving into Wales to save some money, especially the self employed who can work from home and don’t need to commute every day.

Not only that, but people in Wales that earn over £150,000 are currently taxed 45% on their income, but the report also suggests this could be reduced in order to attract the highest earners. When you have millionaires that begin to view Wales as a viable option, then it can be only good for the economy.

Will any of this be put into action though? When you consider it all has to go through UK parliament then I really don’t think so. Even if the report makes perfect sense and it would be a guaranteed £500 million a year for Wales, it would still be a challenge to get enough people to say yes.

As I mentioned earlier, the initial revenue would go down, and this is challenging for many people to understand, especially when they are politicians and not business people. Who knows though, maybe someone will understand the figures? Probably not but it might happen.

The report went on to suggest that reducing the 20% basic income tax rate would not have a beneficial effect for the Welsh economy, mainly because it wouldn’t attract any extra migration from other countries.

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Contractors to Leave the Public Sector Due to Tax Changes

The IPSE have warned that key contractors will leave the public sector if the government continue with proposed tax changes this year.

Basically, up until now it has been down to the contractors themselves to determine if they have the correct employment status, and this only gets questioned if the Inland Revenue has reason to believe it might be wrong.

With the new changes it will be up to public sector employers to decide the employment status of a contractor, which means they become responsible for putting on employment taxes. Not only that, but it also takes away a lot of control from the contractors themselves, as they could could find themselves labelled as an employee rather than self employed.

In short, things are going to become a lot more confusing for both employers and contractors, and it will no doubt just lead to more paperwork and time wasted phoning up places where they put you on hold for 45 minutes.

When you consider all of this, it’s easy to see why the IPSE are predicting that contractors will leave the public sector in their droves and start looking elsewhere for work. Why continue in a sector that just wants to hold you down, when there are so many other industries out there that are new and dynamic? The choice is going to be clear for thousands of people.

You can be sure the government didn’t think of this when they were sitting around and planning things out. That is the problem with many of these new initiatives…they fail to see the bigger picture.

No doubt the initial goal of all this is to save money for the government, but in the long run they may end up losing money as they find it hard to fill jobs in the public sector.

Actually, it wouldn’t surprise me if the government do a complete U-turn once they see just how many people start to quit. It wouldn’t be the first time they have backtracked on a new policy.

Sure, these kind of things seem like a good idea when you are sitting around in a meeting room in a nice building in the centre of London, but then it gets implemented in the real world and soon becomes apparent that they got it completely wrong.

Who knows though. Maybe the IPSE are off the mark in their predictions, and perhaps the new changes will be a good thing for the public sector. I highly doubt it, but let’s wait to see what happens.

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London Contractors Pay The Most Tax Says New Report

The statistics don’t lie…London pays approximately one third of all UK tax, generating as much as most other cities combined.

Thanks to a new report by Think Tank, Centre for Cities, we can see just how important London is to the financial status of the UK. Not only that, but it went on to suggest that contractors are right at the forefront of this strong London economy, and this will remain the same for many years to come.

In fact, during the last 10 years the amount of tax paid by London residents has gone up by 25%, while in comparison, Manchester residents has stayed pretty much the same, while in cities like Birmingham, Glasgow and Leeds the amount of tax paid has actually gone down.

So why is the economy so strong in London and why are so many contractors finding work there? There are many reasons, but the main one is because the capital is a hub of economic activity for companies from around the world, with many European, Asian and North American brands setting up offices and shops there.

Also, London is very attractive to contractors from around the European Union, with millions of workers from many different countries arriving in the capital over the last 10 years with the intention of working hard and paying their taxes to the UK government

It’s not all straight forward in the future though. Since the UK voted to leave the European Union earlier this year, there are not clear plans on what will happen to European workers living and working in London over the next few years.

If the new Prime Minister and her government are smart though, I think they should do everything in their power to make sure London keeps strong international ties with both companies and workers, and do everything they can to ensure there are many contractors allowed to work in the capital for many years to come. If they don’t, then don’t be surprised when you get paid less tax in 10 years time.

While things are definitely looking good for London right now, the report has also highlighted the need to focus more on improving the economies in other cities, particularly in the North, West Midlands and Scotland.

Some people are calling for more public spending in cities like Manchester and Glasgow, in order to make them more attractive for both companies and workers alike.

My opinion on this is straight forward. Yes, London is the foundation of the UK economy and our main focus should be there, especially if they want to keep generating income tax from the thousands of contractors.

However, let’s not forget that cities like Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, and Leeds could also be huge economic powers in their own right with just a bit more attention and public spending. Over to you Prime Minister.

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Could devolved tax powers be coming to your region?

The dust may still be settling on the Scotland independence referendum, but its legacy – the call for more devolved tax powers – is already making itself known.

One of the biggest selling points the ‘Better Together’ campaign blokes ran on was offering Scotland devolved tax powers if the vote came down to stay in the union. Now that the No votes have been tallied there’s been demands for Westminster to live up to its promise – and that means that there could very soon be a completely separate tax rate for Scottish residents.

However, this newly promised devolution has ignited the imagination of the English. South of the border, a new research study conducted by the Institute of Directors found that more than two out of every three managing directors wouldn’t mind seeing the same thing begin to happen in other areas of the UK – more specifically there’s a large push for devolved tax rates on a city-by-city basis.

Now I’m not going to sit here and say that instituting such a new programme would be easy. Obviously it would e a rat’s nest of problems to unravel, and it would easily mean that no one would be able to do their taxes without the help of some very well-educated contractor accountants that can navigate this new economic landscape. Not only that but if the entire UK ends up with devolved taxation on a per-city basis there could be some serious competition as far as where people want to live and work.

This could cause some serious problems. Imagine if local authorities end up in a competition ‘price war’ with one another, driving their income taxes down lower and lower to attract new residents. Sure that might be good for anyone who wants a low tax burden, but what happens when these tax rates fall so low that the revenue each city collects isn’t enough to keep things running smoothly? Why, they’ll have to raise taxes – and risk a mass exodus from the region to the next-closest one with lower taxes.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not a fan of Westminster making country-wide decisions, and I’m glad that Scotland has some devolved powers coming its way. But I also think that too much devolution could end up disastrous for us all.

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Watch out: not even death will stop the taxman

The old saying goes that you can’t avoid either death or paying taxes, but when it comes to inheritance tax avoidance, the taxman is taking steps there as well.

So here’s a funny little story, one that will have you scratching your head. Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs has decided, in its infinite wisdom, that the time and energy it’s been spending on going after contractors and freelancers on income tax avoidance is best used elsewhere. Now normally I would be handing out cigars and celebrating, but the new focus of the tax authority is on inheritance tax avoidance. In particular, HMRC wants to nip inheritance tax avoidance in the bud… asking you to pay your tax before you die.

Now on the one hand there is a serious possibility that there are some tax planners that are using some rather well-hidden legal loopholes to engage in some massive tax avoidance, mainly because the number of disclosure rules that IHT is quite few when it comes to practical use. There are apparently plenty of ways to purposefully undervalue your estate, so the idea of paying inheritance tax up front before you actually shuffle off your mortal coil is in theory an excellent way to stamp out yet another avenue of tax avoidance.

Then again, on the other hand this just sounds like an incredible inconvenience – and one that seems more than a bit invasive if you ask me! I mean let’s be honest here; whatever happened to leaving your financial problems to your heirs to take care of? Now you’ve got to take care of your inheritance details well before you’re actually gone? It just seems in incredibly poor taste as well, for what it’s worth. Usually HMRC waits until the body is at least cold before taking its pound of flesh out of it, but now the taxman wants it up front and centre while your heart’s still beating! It’s just bad cricket if you ask me. Not that you’re asking me, but I still feel it’s just awfully uncouth to ask people to pay their death tax before they’re actually bloody dead and buried!

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