The new income tax marriage allowance may be short-lived

The new transferable tax allowance for married couples and civil partners may be short-lived if Labour win the general election. Eligible couples can now register an interest online, and registered couples will be invited in stages, after 6 April, to apply for the allowance. It will not be possible to call HMRC to register an … Continue reading The new income tax marriage allowance may be short-lived

Tax advisers respond to public accounts committee’s call for state regulation

Tax professionals argue that a new code of conduct is unnecessary, but some experts have expressed support for a kitemark, or charter, for advisers. In my latest article for Accountancy Age, practising tax experts discuss the existing codes of conduct and consider whether HMRC could set acceptable professional standards. What tax planning is appropriate? The [professional code of … Continue reading Tax advisers respond to public accounts committee’s call for state regulation

The tax gap and Labour’s review of HMRC

Ed Miliband announced at the weekend that, if elected, Labour would open an “independent, root and branch review of the culture and practice of HMRC” in relation to tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance. Today the Financial Times reported that there was support for the idea of a review among tax experts who “thought HMRC … Continue reading The tax gap and Labour’s review of HMRC

‘Great care’ needed over umbrella arrangements and temporary workers

Some welcome changes to the taxation of employee expenses and benefits are included in the draft Finance Bill, following a review by the Office of Tax Simplification, but a more difficult issue concerning the use of umbrella companies and “salary sacrifice” was addressed in a separate consultation published on 16 December. The government noted an … Continue reading ‘Great care’ needed over umbrella arrangements and temporary workers

Tax consultation deadlines

Consultation on the draft Finance Bill measures published in December closed yesterday. You have just over a week to “have your say” on Budget 2015, if you want to make representations to the Treasury. Submissions are invited by 13 February. The Finance Bill is expected to be published very soon after the 18 March Budget. … Continue reading Tax consultation deadlines

Self-employment in the UK – in charts

The number of people reporting themselves as self-employed in the UK has increased by 40% over the last 13 years, according to a presentation published yesterday by the Department for Business. Self-employment now makes up 15% of total UK employment. “Involuntary part-time” work has increased for both employees and self-employed since 2004. Self-employed people work … Continue reading Self-employment in the UK – in charts

Tax is ‘fast becoming the most toxic issue’ for successful companies

Britain’s corporate tax system is “broken”, according to Patrick Hosking, financial editor of The Times (paywall). “Nothing reflects this better than a tiny heart-shaped squiggle that is starting to appear in the advertising of British blue chips.” The squiggle is the Fair Tax Mark logo, and SSE plc is the first FTSE 100 company to use … Continue reading Tax is ‘fast becoming the most toxic issue’ for successful companies