It's not looking good!

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Last year we were celebrating having a record number of tax returns filed by Christmas, and we enjoyed a relatively smooth January. I don't think anyone worked much overtime, I certainly didn't have to work weekends in January 2012.

This year it's a very different picture. The tax team all have some 50-60 returns each left to complete by 31 January 2013, and there's no immediate sign of any of the outstanding information arriving any time soon.

Thankfully there are no big sets of accounts left to be prepared, but we'll still be pushed to the limit after Christmas.

Is this a sign that the recession is beginning to bite? Have clients decided to delay having their tax returns prepared in order to delay paying our fee perhaps? Or is it the opposite, they are all so busy that they haven't had time to deal with their tax?

Whatever the reason, we're all bracing ourselves for long days and weeks in January!


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19th Dec 2012 16:52


I've noticed the same. I've been able to get more data early but many others have really dragged their heels.

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19th Dec 2012 16:56

Head in the sand

In my case, I suspect that many simply do not want to know their tax liabilities before Christmas.

Why finding this out along with their January credit card statements is preferable is beyond my understanding.




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19th Dec 2012 18:26

My practice is small but I've found exactly the same issues, last year at this time I had approx 15 outstanding this year it's near the 30 mark. I think lack of cash is perhaps part of the problem but also, where most small businesses have had a tough year, they perhaps just don't have the time or energy for their accounts!

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20th Dec 2012 09:41

Same here

a combination of lack of cash and not wanting to know what tax is due.  Also had a few clients 'go to ground' and will probably not appear again....some very desperate cases out there....

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21st Dec 2012 09:13

Me too!

I started nagging in October as I could see that there was going to be more outstanding than the usual 'ones who always leave it to the last minute'.

I have had 6 who have sent in this week and want to know their tax bills by the first week of Jan as they are going away the 2nd week of Jan. Two who are going on a 6 month trip abroad.

But there again - I've not done my own yet - Ltd Co = due in by 31 Dec!

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21st Dec 2012 14:05

The worst client!

Me too - I still have to do my own accounts which are also due in by 31 December - want to get them filed before Xmas so that I can feel more relaxed.

I call myself the worst client because I give the "proper clients" priority and so my own stuff gets put on the back burner.


Happy Xmas everyone.



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