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Can I do tax returns for colleagues?

Accountant in business building up practice in spare time

Brief query - I am employed in industry as a finance manager but have a PC and am trying to build up a client base.

A few colleagues (none directors) have rental properties etc and would like me to do their tax returns for them. Are there any ethical restrictions to doing this (eg familiarity threats, objectivity threats etc)? I know for sure that loans to/from any of them are strictly forbidden, not that such a matter has or will arise with any of them.

Cheers

 

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By SXGuy
21st Jun 2018 09:17

Short answer, No.

Long answer, be sure to know what you are doing before you do anything for anyone.

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By Jdopus
21st Jun 2018 10:39

No ethical restrictions on the accounting side I should think. The threats you mention are threats that would need to be considered if you were an auditor, you aren't expected to avoid familiarity or retain objectivity towards someone who appoints you to act as their accountant - quite the opposite - you're supposed to act in their interests.

The only place you might be concerned about ethical issues are in your role as a finance manager - there may be issues with you handling tax affairs for people you have other workplace duties towards. Nothing that would create legal trouble but depending on who you act for you could create conflict in the workplace if anything goes wrong.

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By John R
21st Jun 2018 11:51

If you are a member of a professional body, check with them - you may need a practising certificate and PI cover.
You will have to be regulated for money laundering either by your professional body or HMRC unless you are doing this for free.

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to John R
21st Jun 2018 13:16

Quote:

If you are a member of a professional body, check with them - you may need a practising certificate and PI cover.

The OP already has a PC so presumably PI and MLR in place since they are prerequisites for the PC.

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to Tim Vane
21st Jun 2018 17:52

Quote:

Quote:

If you are a member of a professional body, check with them - you may need a practising certificate and PI cover.

The OP already has a PC so presumably PI and MLR in place since they are prerequisites for the PC.

DOH! I read that as has a computer ... face meet palm
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21st Jun 2018 13:55

From a business point of view its probably not clever.

You need to be in a position of independence with clients so you cant be "leaned on" from either a cost/work point of view and a tax deduction point of view.

Working for "family and friends (or colleagues as her)" means there is a strong "non business" relationship which can interfere with clear lines of the business one.

You probably also risk being perceived as running a business on work time, even if its not true which if the redundancy hat is going round might be used to push you to the front of the queue!

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