Government knocks back PTA petition

Practice correspondent
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The government has rebuffed a petition demanding they scrap plans to force self-employed and small business to do quarterly reporting under HMRC’s digital strategy.

The new personal tax accounts (PTAs) will require most businesses, self-employed people and landlords to keep track of their tax affairs digitally and update HMRC “at least” quarterly.

“Each self-employed individual and small business will have the added burden of additional red tape, accountancy fees and potential for fines,” wrote the petition’s creator Paul Johnson. “At the moment we pay £1,200 a year in accountancy fees this figure will greatly increase.”

In an official response to the petition, the government denied that Making Tax Digital will mean four tax returns a year, stating that “Quarterly updates will largely be a matter of checking data generated from record keeping software or apps and clicking ‘send’.

“These reforms will not mean that businesses have to provide the equivalent of four tax returns every year. Updating HMRC through software or apps will deliver a light-touch process, much less burdensome and time-consuming than it is today.”

Started on 16 December, the petition has now reached 100,000 signatures, meaning that it will be considered for parliamentary debate.

In his Autumn Statement, the Chancellor said Making Tax Digital will “give individuals and businesses a more convenient real-time view of their tax affairs, providing them with greater certainty about the tax they owe.”

The government estimates that £6.5bn in tax goes unpaid every year because of mistakes made when filling in tax returns. According to the government response, “These reforms will make it easier for taxpayers to maintain accurate and up-to-date tax affairs, reducing the scope for error”.

But Johnson - and his 104, 025 co-signatories (at time of writing) clearly aren’t convinced. “As a small business owner myself I already spend quite some time to get things in order once-a-year. There will be greater chance of errors”, said Johnson. “The Conservatives are not working for small businesses in bringing such legislation but adding burden.”

The government reply stated, however, that sanctions for in-year updates will not be the same as apply now to the year-end position. “HMRC will consult during 2016 on what sanctions might be appropriate for a more digital tax administration.”

“Quarterly updates will not involve all the complexity of a full tax return. The updates will be generated from existing digital business records. In most cases, little or no further entry of information will be needed. It will be much quicker to complete than the current tax return.”

“We will use volunteers to test the new tools and processes and give us feedback. Quarterly updates will be introduced for some from 2018, and will be phased in fully by 2020, giving taxpayers time to adapt.”

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05th Jan 2016 14:37

"The government estimates

"The government estimates that £6.5bn in tax goes unpaid every year because of mistakes made when filling in tax returns."

 

Oddly enough, they never provide statistics to show how much extra is in the Government coffers because of mistakes by HMRC, and straight forward 6 month delays in issuing repayments.

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Very good point

And I strongly suspect if someone were to volunteer that estimate, they wouldn't remain employed for very long. 

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The mind boggles

"Quarterly updates will largely be a matter of checking data generated from record keeping software or apps and clicking 'send'."

Is it possible for HMRC decision makers to be any further detached from reality?  It's frightening!

Also how can you get a "real time view of your tax affairs" without calculating capital allowances, farmers averaging, capital gains and disposals, stock levels, WIP, herd basis adjustments etc etc.  I take it these wonder apps that they seem to believe every business already use handles all of these elements by the click of a button as well? 

Has anyone actually determined what percentage of business owners in the UK currently use accounting software or apps to record their transactions? What percentage of these existing users then record their income and expenses correctly without error?

What a waste of tax payers money and company resources implementing a system that is utterly doomed to make no positive difference to HMRC.  The software 'professionals' that sold them on this idea must be rubbing their hands together with glee. I imagine the people from HMRC pushing for this change will all end up with top paying jobs at Xero or Sage once implemented.  I can only assume that this is corruption in action, at least that would make sense, because if someone in power actually believes this is a positive change for HMRC & UK business the mind boggles.

It's going to be four near meaningless returns followed by the actual tax return. What's the point?

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06th Jan 2016 11:39

Yet.........

The Highlander wrote:

Also how can you get a "real time view of your tax affairs" without calculating capital allowances, farmers averaging, capital gains and disposals, stock levels, WIP, herd basis adjustments etc etc.  I take it these wonder apps that they seem to believe every business already use handles all of these elements by the click of a button as well? 

However, when I made precisely the same points in another recent thread (Time To Make A Stand!), a number of members dismissed such concerns.

Furthermore, they robustly defended the HMRC plans and asserted "Software" would easily handle the mid-year calculations and computations.

I wish! I have been deeply engaged in ICT since the days of mainframes; and software creation since the late 1980s...

Still it must be nice to dream and fantasise on whichever plant they inhabit.

 

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05th Jan 2016 14:55

I can just about

see some logic for VAT registered businesses who report quarterly or monthly currently but for micro one man band outfits either the numbers reported will be utterly meaningless - because either they will be 'fudged' or because those folks don't know what to report anyway and will botch it - or they will be ignored as more businesses disappear into the black economy.

Still 2020 gives me 4 years to either win the lottery (unlikely as I don't play it) get a legacy from a rich Aunt (unlikely as I don't have one) or come up on the £1 premium bond my parents bought when I was five!

Unlikely as I cashed it in some years ago.....

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By MarkP
06th Jan 2016 11:43

Only 2 years I'm afraid

memyself-eye wrote:

Still 2020 gives me 4 years

April 2018 is the date for unincorporated businesses/landlords for quarterly bookkeeping

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And lest we forget the digital divide

According to the government's research, 19% of self-employed with no employees surveyed were classified as digitally excluded. "Digitally excluded" meaning no use of the internet. I really feel they are underestimating just how far behind the digital curve many people are. 

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03rd Feb 2016 19:25

So much for Silicon Fen

I have just been told that the comparable figure locally is 23 % . This might not seem particularly mindboggling but my practice is in Cambridge, supposedly a centre of technological excellence.

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05th Jan 2016 16:04

What percentage of tax returns are filed in December and January

Last year I believe HMRC themselves quoted this figure at something like 30% of the total.  Of course at that time they published the figure to say "Aren't we wonderful being able to process all of this data?"

But we can take it as read that that 30% cohort of taxpayers are by no means ready for this digital quarterly revolution.  Add in another 20% of non-VAT taxpayers who file in good time, but nonetheless struggle to get their records together for an annual filing, and we are left with in my view 50% - HALF - of all SA taxpayers who will struggle with this nonsense.

And remember, 30% of that 50% estimate comes right from HMRC!!  So they can't deny that 30%, it was their number!

My approach to this farce will be simple if it becomes law.  MAKE IT UP.  Make it ball bark, but just stick in any old number and press submit.  Clients who want more will either have to do it themselves or pay extra in fees.  Letters of engagement will be adjusted accordingly.

What they should be spending their IT resources on is fixing the awful system they currently have.  For example, if agents had proper view access to VAT and PAYE then we could fix some of the messes HMRC prats have created in the system with their rubbish software and its mispostings.

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By nickja
06th Jan 2016 11:39

So the taxpayers have to suffer....

....because we're not going to!  Do you not realise that most taxpayers turn to us because they want someone who knows what they're doing to take all possible steps to make sure that they, the taxpayers, can sleep at night secure in the knowledge that we and they have taken all reasonable steps to make sure that they, the taxpayers, have done everything to make sure that they are compliant.  They use us for our knowledge.

The idiotic thing about these proposals is that this government seems to believe that tax law is so straightforward that everyone understands it when the exact opposite is the reality.   We need to work with taxpayers, not threaten them, if we are to persuade government that these proposals are unworkable.   Focussing on the implications for our finances will positively drive clients away just when the strength of our relationships is most needed to develop a workable alternative to the simplistic nonsense the government's proposal so clearly is.

 

 

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.

Hmm unchecked crappy data 4 times a year.  That's going to be really useful data then. Goodness knows what they will actually do with it.  The use is the most important thing, or is it being collected merely to provide well paid consultancy position and IT contracts for their mates?

What the official omits to mention is then, we presumably need to do it properly at some point.  So that's 5 times a year, 4 garbage returns, one proper "return of taxes" given we no longer have a "tax return".

"out of touch" doesn't even come close.  

one has to question very hard WHY they want 4 streams of polluted data clogging up their systems instead of one clean and filtered submission annually. 

 

 

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07th Jan 2016 11:04

HMRC is logical

ireallyshouldknowthisbut wrote:

Hmm unchecked crappy data 4 times a year. 

 

Because they can issue penalties x 4 for incorrect data submissions. Its all very logical. And very lucrative. Its like winning the lottery!

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05th Jan 2016 21:59

What will be different than quarterly Corporation Tax?

Do HMRC propose to change the present system for those companies who have to pay quarterly CT on account?

If not, why would the requirement for all other taxpayers have to be any different?

It appears to me that none of the qualified accountants that are employed by HMRC have been consulted about the practicality of quarterly reports in smaller enterprises. 

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05th Jan 2016 22:08

Easy peasy

Yes Geoffwolf you have spotted the easy peasy, low-cost implementation HMRC could and should have done.

Make SA payments on account quarterly like corporation tax.

Because at the end of the day we all know this is all about cash flow.  How hard can it be HMRC?

 

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06th Jan 2016 00:38

Universal tax credits
Think also it's so they can work out UTC payments too so we are all in it together even if we don't claim any!
I do recall a few years back on courses this was mentioned and someone also referred to it on another thread.
Now we have the universal tax c*ck-up (UTC) coming.
Tax simplification anyone? Can anyone list 3 things that have been simplified in the last 3 years? May need a history degree to look back and see.

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By B.R.
06th Jan 2016 11:08

PTA's and quarterly submissions.

There's no point in getting excited at this latest HMRC initiative - it's doomed to failure, but at least en route it will create a couple of hundred tech billionaires in companies with a retired politician in the chair!

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06th Jan 2016 11:49

Refreshing One's Memory?

B.R. wrote:

There's no point in getting excited at this latest HMRC initiative - it's doomed to failure, but at least en route it will create a couple of hundred tech billionaires in companies with a retired politician in the chair!

Useful resource.

http://www.computing.co.uk/ctg/feature/2422715/the-10-worst-ever-governm...

https://www.google.co.uk/?gws_rd=ssl#q=computer+weekly++Inland+Revenue+a...

 

 

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By DMBAcc
06th Jan 2016 11:11

Please can someone tell me....

..... how my mother and many like her who submit paper SA returns before 31 Oct each year will cope?  She has no interent connection and wouldn't know how to turn on a computer leave alone use one.  She has no smart phone because of the expense and again wouldn't know what an "app" was if it hit her sqaurely in the face  Is Mr. Osborne going to offer her free interent access, smart phone and training?

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06th Jan 2016 11:45

and how many more?

Forget the number who HMRC say are "digitally excluded" - that's just the number who have no internet connection at all

What we really need to consider is the number of businesses (mostly sole-traders, but not exclusively so), who at present keep all their records either on paper (like your mother) or at most in Microsoft's Excel, Works or Money. As far as I'm aware, Microsoft haven't yet added a [send my return to HMRC] button to any of their excellent products.

Perhaps HMRC could make this a requirement only for larger businesses (>£100k) ?

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By DMBAcc
06th Jan 2016 11:51

thank you John Banks and ....

it will be most interesting to see who blinks first - my mother (a stuborn Cornish woman) or HMRC.  Won't it be fun for the media when HMRC take her to court for unpaid fines for not engaging in the technological world.  I can see the headlines now - "Great Grandmother in court for failing to have a smart phone"

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06th Jan 2016 11:25

Going to be a mess

The problem seems to be the Treasury is populated by people who have no concept of reality and are advised by huge companies, who assume that everyone has a dedicated payroll dept, accounts dept, etc and everyone uses online accounts packages that will integrate without any problem with HMRC;s system.

First the attack on interest payments for landlords (it's a COST HMRC, not a voluntary deduction..being a higher rate taxpayer doesn't mean you get to pay less interest..), and now this badly aimed idea.

I'm guessing maybe 15% of my clients would be able to use such a system with my help, the other 85% will just ask me to insert a guess every quarter.

Huge increases in fees, leading to more people trying to do it themselves and massive increase in tax take for HMRC as they have a history of overcharging people who are not represented.

HMRC will press ahead no matter how many people object- they have decided they are going to do it and nothing anyone says will stop them, despite all evidence showing what a terrible idea it is.

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06th Jan 2016 12:00

Not forgetting that the Landlord's interest paid out is income to the recipient on which tax is paid so talk about having your cake and eating it HMRC - shall we all pay our taxes twice? GO have more tax just become you think you can!  

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06th Jan 2016 11:35

'Bloke down the pub' accountants at it again

My concerns are that you are going to have less accurate information supplied and in some cases on purpose:

I had a call on Monday from a client stating he wanted to dis-incorporate and return to sole trade, after a 'bloke down the pub' conversation. He believes that our fees will be too much for dealing with this quarterly (we haven't actually spoken to him about fees yet!) and, if he's doing it himself, he will be able to make it look as if he's earned less. Oh my!

I doubt that he is the only person in this situation and suspect many 'bloke down the pub' accountants will be bandying this around in the coming months. Expect a few calls along those lines.

With that in mind, has anyone seen anything to suggest that HMRC are going to require periodical examination of the info supplied and by whom. I doubt that HMRC have the resources to carry out annual checks on all taxpayers, so this will lead to that £6·5bn hole getting bigger.

The PTA et al. may be a part of an even bigger plan; including such ideas as - once (and if) you get everyone quarterly reporting, why not require all businesses to be VAT registered with a lower rate for the up to £100k turnover. This, of course, does not affect the tax-lock promises.

It's quite possibly about meeting the deficit reduction target too. Government is, I think somebody on here mentioned recently, for some reason on cash accounting. Therefore, if this works sooner, George can bring in the quarterly payment of taxes, advancing sufficient funds to give him a buffer against unforeseen poor growth figures, etc.

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By KateR
06th Jan 2016 11:41

Quarterly updates and digital records

Agree whole-heartedly with all those who have said government and HMRC are divorced from reality. Many small businesses/sole-traders do not use accounting software or have smartphone apps. To introduce this digital reporting from April 2016 without a lead in period is going to create chaos. It is not just the increased fees but the ability to do this which is worrying the small taxpayer. But if it means more fines for late or incorrect reporting why should HMRC care and the government must be rubbing their hands with glee, taking from the poor to......

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06th Jan 2016 11:44

just let them sink the ship

Give up and let them sink the ship.

It's the only way.

or vote UKIP

Do we really want to live in such a world? even IS is looking preferable.

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By Peter-S
06th Jan 2016 11:58

Wonder what would happen ....

if the 100,000+ signatories just refused to play ball come the start date!

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06th Jan 2016 12:04

Next step - now we can all do something!

Please ensure your local MP is fully aware of what the petition is about.

The phrase "Started on 16 December, the petition has now reached 100,000 signatures, meaning that it will be considered for parliamentary debate." the wording is "will be considered".

That means that they can ignore this petition.They must not be allowed to do this

It is over to you carry on the next step! 

Good lucj to us all.

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06th Jan 2016 12:09

Use the media

What we need to get the Government to listen on this issue is some news coverage.

Headlines like:-

'bonanza for bean counters'

'accountants poised to quadruple their staff count to cope with huge increase in red tape'

That should get some momentum going.

 

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06th Jan 2016 12:24

Yep

jon_griffey wrote:

What we need to get the Government to listen on this issue is some news coverage.

Headlines like:-

'bonanza for bean counters'

'accountants poised to quadruple their staff count to cope with huge increase in red tape'

That should get some momentum going.

 

 

Yep

 

but we would just be seen as the bad guys as usual.

it's us that takes the flack when tax and red tape increases.

They are not going to take any notice and it is what people are voting for otherwise they would vote for something else.

We are just in the way of this oppressive regime. "taxation without representation is tyranny" Otis ? not Reading lol

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06th Jan 2016 12:15

tax owed?
Surely based on ANNUAL profit. The whole idea of quarterly returns is flawed.

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06th Jan 2016 12:29

Flawed

listerramjet wrote:
Surely based on ANNUAL profit. The whole idea of quarterly returns is flawed.

certainly

Plain obvious what the result is going to be.

They know too as it's the reverse of the spin as one might expect from professional fibbers.

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06th Jan 2016 12:49

Key question

listerramjet wrote:
Surely based on ANNUAL profit. The whole idea of quarterly returns is flawed.

This is perhaps the key question that HMRC have been strangely silent on.  How are you supposed to report income on a quarterly basis which is taxed by reference to an annual basis? Will we end up with personal allowances, annual investment allowances, tax bands etc being changed to quarterly?  In a similar way that Class 1 National Insurance is calculated?  This would actually make sense if the intention is to dovetail the digital tax accounts with Universal Credit which in fact would appear to be the rationale.

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06th Jan 2016 12:25

Time to talk to our MP's?

I am seriously thinking of trying to have a long conversation with my local MP (if he will listen).

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06th Jan 2016 12:34

smiley face

Homeworker wrote:

I am seriously thinking of trying to have a long conversation with my local MP (if he will listen).

 

Are you a young person? Still full of hope and optimism?

Fair play to you.

He will pretend to listen to you, you might even get a reply saying they are taking your comments on board.

Then they will forget about it.

Yesterdays chip paper and on with the next circus to keep the plebs entertained.

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06th Jan 2016 12:33

So the next step

will be monthly returns on RTI for income and expenses, with an adjustment for CA's etc. on the last return. Seems prety straightforward to me.

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06th Jan 2016 12:40

girraffe

johnjenkins wrote:

will be monthly returns on RTI for income and expenses, with an adjustment for CA's etc. on the last return. Seems prety straightforward to me.

We need to throw some babies out with the dishwater first.

It will work great if we get rid of

Accruals

Profit

Capital v Revenue

CA's Pa what's all that about. what i dont understand Ican just cross out in the digital age.

 

 

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06th Jan 2016 12:35

Well done

Did you know on the original article to file 4 returns a year some people on this website actually thought the petition was a crack pot idea.  I am glad to say I voted, and I was one of the 100,000.  

 

As we all know this website there is a high percentage of nutters, muppets, troublemakers, trolls, balm pots, nitwits, puff wits, Charleys,  big time charlies, Charleys aunts .........

The nutters on this site are only equaled by the nutters currently working at the treasury.

Shame on those who did not  sign the petition.

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By janefg
06th Jan 2016 12:41

Agents able to do quarterly submissions?
I thought that HMRC were now making it impossible for agents to send this information to them on behalf of their clients. Something about HMRC software being able to determine which computer was sending it?

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By coland
06th Jan 2016 13:00

Parliamentary debate

Petitions and their result are to say the least laughable.

Having recently joined in a significant one I learn that the resultant debate will be in Westminster Hall and no vote is scheduled to take place.

If we believe there is greater Parliamentary accountability resulting then we are deluded!

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06th Jan 2016 13:10

The politicians and  the

The politicians and  the civil servants advising them occupy a higher level divorced from the plebs that pay them.

This has always been the case and efficiency is not a factor if it does not give them more pay

I still believe that most people are honest and want to get it right. Its these though that will have to pay for getting it right either by paying professional fees or more tax to pay lost tax tax from those who get it "wrong" deliberately or otherwise and this will be  a substantial element 

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By cfield
06th Jan 2016 13:48

It's the arm-twisting I don't like

Making Tax Digital is actually a good idea for those with the software, know-how and up-to-date accounting records to make it work, but it's the compulsion element that offends me. Why do the Government always have to make changes like this compulsory?

It never used to be like this. When PAYE first went online, they actually handed out incentives of £825 over 5 years to those willing to embrace the new process. Now it's all stick and no carrot.

As others have said, there are a huge number of people who simply won't be able to do this and will have to pay others to do it for them. That's unfair. They should be allowed to opt out and carry on with annual tax returns, on paper if they so desire.

In the end, the market will decide if this is a good idea or not. If it is, people will embrace it. If it isn't, it will fall flat on its face like any other commercial venture that fails to cut the mustard. Making a new product or process compulsory is anti-competitive. It's like Hitler making Mein Kampf compulsory reading.

It's all very well the Government saying that they will make free products available, but will they be buying computers or subsidising broadband subscriptions for those self-employed people who don't actually use IT to do their accounts. Or paying their extra accountancy bills?

They say it will be operated with a light-touch, but I see from their response that they will still be handing out penalties for those who don't comply - just not the same ones we have at present.

They say it will reduce errors, but if you have to do a job 4 times a year, that can increase the scope for errors. For instance, you could report the same transaction in 2 quarters, or it might fall through the cracks and miss both quarters.

They say it's not doing 4 tax returns a year, but it still means doing accounts 4 times a year. People will not change the way they do things just to please the Government. If a gardener is happy keeping track of his income and expenses in a notebook, he won't start using an "app" instead just because the Government tells him he should. He should be allowed to carry on doing what works for him.

In short, carry on with the IT revolution if it is a sensible use of taxpayers money, but don't make it compulsory for everyone.

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By nicdell
06th Jan 2016 13:42

This is ominous

HMRC have already indicated that they only want accountants acting for clients where they 'add value' - see Jim Harra's comment that 'The key thing for me . . . is making sure we've got the maximum value we can from having an agent in the relationship between HMRC and the taxpayer'. This latest proposal appears to be all part of their drive to marginalise accountants and make them redundant so that they don't have to waste time dealing with those 'pesky nuisances'. After all, who needs an accountant if the digital record keeping and apps can do the job?

Everyone should send a copy of this thread to George Osborne and Lin Homer, with a copy to their MP, so that they are all aware of the very important points that they need to address - if indeed they can be addressed. It is a crackpot idea with a possibly devious objective. 

I wasn't aware of the petition - can anyone provide a link? Thanks.

 

 

 

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Link

Nicdell if you click on the word petition in the first sentence of the article it should take you to the correct place.

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06th Jan 2016 14:44

Direct link

If the embedded link doesn't work try this: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/115895

I have sent this question to my MP. I don't expect an answer, but you never know. My question is in italics.

The government's response to the threshold of 10,000 signatures included this statement:
'Quarterly updates will not involve all the complexity of a full tax return. The updates will be generated from existing digital business records. In most cases, little or no further entry of information will be needed. It will be much quicker to complete than the current tax return'
Does the expression 'digital records' refer to records kept by HMRC or does it refer to records which must be generated by the taxpayer?

What I want to know is whether HMRC is assuming that the information in the "updates" will remain static. The only static accounting information I can think of is the taxpayer's name and reference number. Even in a microbusiness like mine everything changes from one quarter to another. If the information is not static I want to know how the quarterly update will involve less work than a full return. [spoiler: I guess the quarterly update will include only the basics like gross income and expenses without any ability to deal with factors that reduce tax liabilities - and we will soon be making inflated quarterly payments and an annual claim for reimbursement of excess payments].

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06th Jan 2016 21:25

No

C.Y.Nical wrote:

If the embedded link doesn't work try this: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/115895

I have sent this question to my MP. I don't expect an answer, but you never know. My question is in italics.

The government's response to the threshold of 10,000 signatures included this statement:
'Quarterly updates will not involve all the complexity of a full tax return. The updates will be generated from existing digital business records. In most cases, little or no further entry of information will be needed. It will be much quicker to complete than the current tax return'
Does the expression 'digital records' refer to records kept by HMRC or does it refer to records which must be generated by the taxpayer?

What I want to know is whether HMRC is assuming that the information in the "updates" will remain static. The only static accounting information I can think of is the taxpayer's name and reference number. Even in a microbusiness like mine everything changes from one quarter to another. If the information is not static I want to know how the quarterly update will involve less work than a full return. [spoiler: I guess the quarterly update will include only the basics like gross income and expenses without any ability to deal with factors that reduce tax liabilities - and we will soon be making inflated quarterly payments and an annual claim for reimbursement of excess payments].

To get the right tax all the info needs to go in and all the adjustments. To be blunt they talk crap. I am not paying tax unless it's right.

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12th Jan 2016 13:22

"I'm not paying" - sounds good but will it work?

steve 12321 wrote:
To get the right tax all the info needs to go in and all the adjustments. To be blunt they talk crap. I am not paying tax unless it's right.

How does that work?

Here's what will actually happen. HMRC will run its new system (we probably can't stop them from bringing it in), it will throw up the wrong answer, you will be shown as owing tax, you decide not to pay, you will get a penalty, then you will appeal and wait heaven alone knows how long for an appeal date. By the time your appeal comes up you will p[robably have passed the next January 31st and HMRC will say, "Oh, it's all OK now, s/he's put in a return and we've made the necessary adjustments and refund, there's nothing for the tribunal to consider".

In practice I fear we will have to pay whatever is demanded and hope to claw it back once the end of year self assessments have gone in. For me it will be a cash flow problem, and for the foreseeable future it will cost me money because I will have an overdraft for the next few years, but if the system doesn't allow for a complete return at each "update" I don't see any other result being very likely.

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12th Jan 2016 16:37

keep the tax return

C.Y.Nical wrote:

steve 12321 wrote:
To get the right tax all the info needs to go in and all the adjustments. To be blunt they talk crap. I am not paying tax unless it's right.

How does that work?

Here's what will actually happen. HMRC will run its new system (we probably can't stop them from bringing it in), it will throw up the wrong answer, you will be shown as owing tax, you decide not to pay, you will get a penalty, then you will appeal and wait heaven alone knows how long for an appeal date. By the time your appeal comes up you will p[robably have passed the next January 31st and HMRC will say, "Oh, it's all OK now, s/he's put in a return and we've made the necessary adjustments and refund, there's nothing for the tribunal to consider".

In practice I fear we will have to pay whatever is demanded and hope to claw it back once the end of year self assessments have gone in. For me it will be a cash flow problem, and for the foreseeable future it will cost me money because I will have an overdraft for the next few years, but if the system doesn't allow for a complete return at each "update" I don't see any other result being very likely.

 

This is why we need to ensure we are heard at this point to ensure we pay what they say they want - "the right amount of tax". Designing a system that works,that is easy to operate for all, does not incur a significant amount of additional work, cost and stress (as it will) and brings forward payment dates is what is required. Not a system that you describe. One that has been suggested before - bring forward POAs. Keep the current system. Be inclusive and don't alienate people. We do not need to digitalise it on a mandatory basis. if you can fine but keep the tax return so all reliefs can be claimed as required. Online by 31/1 and paper by 31/10. Simple

 

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06th Jan 2016 14:55

on the plus side

On the plus side an even lighter touch which can only be no touch. Will make it much easier to evade your taxes.

the excuse being you filed incorrect information in fear of peanalties because you were getting behind.

there is no enforcement now save for a penalty if the forms late.

You pay as much tax as you think will keep them off your back and its all simple.

They arrested 600 plumbers and prosecuted 3 so you have absolutely no worries.

If you go for more serious fraud the risks of detection and punishment fall even further.

Perhaps we just need to realise that the days of the honest accountant are numbered and turn to the more lucrative dark side. ooh

yes HMRC have failed to police dodgy accountant too.

 

 

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06th Jan 2016 15:11

I'm not a tax evader

I don't want to evade taxes, so the advantages suggested by the Black Knight don't apply to me and I am left with the disadvantages.

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By nicdell
06th Jan 2016 15:05

Thanks


Thank you. I'll sign the petition now.

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