Share this content
0
780

Bookkeeper - Tax returns ?

Bookkeeper - can I do tax returns?

Didn't find your answer?

Search AccountingWEB

Hi there. 

 apologies if this is the wrong thread - I’m a qualified ACCA member but without a practicing certificate. A PC isn’t something I’m looking to get right now but whilst in the midst of setting up my own bookkeeping business, I’m aware I face certain limitations whilst as an ACCA member. 

My main question is if a bookkeeper can submit tax returns, can I do so as an ACCA member without a PC? I’ve contacted ACCA directly but awaiting a reply so wanted to ask you lovely people. 

I’m trying to see how MTD will affect me directly. My main software is QuickBooks so would like to know if I should be considering MTD as part of that. 

Thank you all. 

Replies

Please login or register to join the discussion.

avatar
18th Jun 2019 20:26

ally1 wrote:

My main question is if a bookkeeper can submit tax returns, can I do so as an ACCA member without a PC?  

The person who empties your bins could set up offering to do people's tax returns. If you are a member of a professional body, and wish to remain so, you comply with the rules. I would imagine you would absolutely be excluded from tax work without a PC.

The equally important question is whether you have sufficient skills and knowledge to provide tax services. It worries me when I see references to "submitting tax returns" as if it's a case of putting numbers in boxes. It isn't, but I am sure you know that.

Thanks (0)
avatar
18th Jun 2019 20:33

ally1 wrote:

My main question is if a bookkeeper can submit tax returns, can I do so as an ACCA member without a PC? I’ve contacted ACCA directly but awaiting a reply ...

They are probably a bit nonplussed that one of their members can't locate the explicit guidance on the subject published on their website.

Thanks (0)
avatar
By Matrix
18th Jun 2019 21:18

If you are ACCA then why do you just want to do bookkeeping? The rates will be lower for a start and you won’t be able to file payroll or VAT returns. I don’t know why you think you can file tax returns without a PC and you said in December you didn’t have the knowledge anyway. You would either need a PC or to resign and register with HMRC for AML.

https://www.accaglobal.com/content/dam/ACCA_Global/Members/Doc/Am_I_in_P...

Thanks (0)
avatar
to Matrix
18th Jun 2019 21:38

Matrix wrote:

I don’t know why you think you can file tax returns without a PC and you said in December you didn’t have the knowledge anyway.

Exactly! I don't know what people who have never "done" tax think is involved, but the idea that you can "fill in tax returns" without a reasonably comprehensive knowledge of tax is actually quite frightening.

Thanks (0)
avatar
By Matrix
to Accountant A
18th Jun 2019 21:55

I am sure someone who is capable of passing ACCA is also capable of learning how to complete tax returns. However even with a PC, you should not offer services which you have insufficient knowledge to provide. I have worked in tax for over 25 years yet I steer clear of various things such as inheritance tax/trusts.

Thanks (1)
avatar
to Matrix
19th Jun 2019 01:47

Matrix wrote:

I am sure someone who is capable of passing ACCA is also capable of learning how to complete tax returns.

Indeed. Ideally before they start offering the service.

The OP said "main question is if a bookkeeper can submit tax returns". My main question - well, concern - is what leads the OP to believe they have the necessary knowledge and experience to do so currently.

I've known plenty of highly competent accountants with specialist finance skills and knowledge - but if it wasn't in tax, I wouldn't want them anywhere near my tax affairs.

Thanks (0)
to Accountant A
19th Jun 2019 09:16

Accountant A wrote:

Matrix wrote:

I don’t know why you think you can file tax returns without a PC and you said in December you didn’t have the knowledge anyway.

Exactly! I don't know what people who have never "done" tax think is involved, but the idea that you can "fill in tax returns" without a reasonably comprehensive knowledge of tax is actually quite frightening.


I've seen plenty of tax returns just filled in with clearly no knowledge of tax. If HMRC don't question it then it must be fine...right?
Thanks (0)
avatar
By frankfx
18th Jun 2019 22:22

Scary question.

Wealth of information readily available on ACCA website, for which the OP has paid from professional subscriptions.

Not sure if any one here would want you to do our tax returns if you are unwillingly to undertake basic research on your own affairs and status.

I think your question reveals a skills gap .

Thanks (1)
19th Jun 2019 08:06

"I’m trying to see how MTD will affect me directly. "

If it doesn't now, it will do in the next few years.

I think you need to do a lot more research.

Thanks (0)
19th Jun 2019 08:47

Hello Ally,

Although I'm not an ACCA member I would assume that, even to practice as a book-keeper, on your own account, you would require a practising certificate? Presumably, you've included your intentions in your approach to your professional body?

Might I suggest that, if you intend to practice, on your own account that, firstly, you embark upon some professional collaboration, or employment even, with an ACCA, or similar firm? I'd go on to suggest that, if you looked towards an organised learning/experience programme, for say the next five years or so, your knowledge and experience, would improve immensely.

Whilst not wishing to single out any professional body in particular, it is worrying that, so many (seemingly) ACCA qualifieds appear on Aweb, going on to display an elementary lack of appreciation of the tasks on hand. Perhaps it's just me and, my age?

Thanks (0)
to Chris.Mann
19th Jun 2019 09:07

Chris.Mann wrote:

Whilst not wishing to single out any professional body in particular, it is worrying that, so many (seemingly) ACCA qualifieds appear on Aweb, going on to display an elementary lack of appreciation of the tasks on hand. Perhaps it's just me and, my age?

Personally, I believe it's just the modern tendency to favour classroom learning over on-the-job experience.

Thanks (0)
to lionofludesch
19th Jun 2019 09:21

From what I understand, it's the trend with many professions/vocations. Nursing to highlight just one.

One questions who/which group of individuals imagine this to be a good idea?

Thanks (0)
By DJKL
to lionofludesch
19th Jun 2019 10:04

Do you not need both for ACCA- I though you certainly used to need to demonstrate relevant experience for ACCA so that whilst you could knock through the various levels of ACCA exam (or get exemptions) you did not get your qualification without putting in the three years-similar to ICAS except with ICAS , back in the 1980s anyway, you needed to get the experience in practice under a registered training contract.

I think the issue is possibly more to do with narrowness when training in industry (which I think is more common re ACCA than with say ICAEW/ICAS) and a less rounded experience- though frankly I could throw the same point at anyone who trained with a big firm and spent three years ticking and even with mid tier firms tax experience could be lacking;- apart from some vatreturns/corporation tax computations I did very little tax work during my apprenticeship, I did not pick up on actually completing returns etc until I moved to a much smaller firm which did not have a distinct tax department.

Thanks (0)
Share this content