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Ltd. Co. direct pension ?which year to attribute?

Limited Company employer direct pension contributions, is the year of payment/attribution important?

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I have a small (very small) Ltd. company, and have been making employer direct pension contributions alongside salary and sometimes dividend (being 100% strict with not exceeding any annual personal allowances over the SIPP years).

Question: My company year end is August 31st.  Do I have to make great efforts to get my pension contributions paid before the 31st, in order to attribute this cost in this accounting year for my company? or is HMRC ok with it being accounted for on the books and then paid when funds are available in a few months?

The advantage of doing so is a reduction in tax payable for this year, the alternative presumably is to offset the profit against a loss next year (if I simply attribute this year's pension cost to next year's accounts when I would prefer to pay it), however this will mean I have to pay tax to be reclaimed, which I'd prefer not to do.  

At present I have assumed that as there is no difference in overall tax revenue to HMRC, and my pension provider states that they can forsee no problems either way from HMRC, that there isn't a rush to transfer the cash before my year end (tomorrow!).  However I've been impressed with the level of advice here, and thought I'd thow the question out, so that I get a bit more certainty over the decision..................

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By Wanderer
30th Aug 2019 12:43
Thanks (1)
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By Matrix
30th Aug 2019 13:12

You have to physically make the payment before year end. Don’t take tax advice from pension providers.

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By Duggimon
30th Aug 2019 14:03

Your pension provider is wrong, don't listen to them. Payment date is king here.

You don't have tax to pay until nine months after the year end so if you'll stretch yourself by paying the pension amount now then just leave off, pay your tax as late as possible and file your loss making accounts as early as possible, you could be left with just three months between paying the tax and reclaiming it.

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By nick farrow
03rd Sep 2019 08:47

Or extend accounting period up to 6 months

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By Ben008
03rd Sep 2019 09:23

Many thanks to your advice above.

I particluarly note " Don’t take tax advice from pension providers.", although the "https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/pensions-tax-manual/ptm043100" was a definitive answer in it's own right.

I have corrected the accounts to reflect the date of cash transfer of the pension contribution (direct employer contribution), which means I am due to pay about £3000 tax.

Coincidentally I have a 2monthish old HMRC refund cheque from a previous year for a similar amount (where losses were carried backwards).

Am I correct in assuming that I should simply hold onto this cheque? and they will deduct one from the other? then reissue.....

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Replying to Ben008:
Hallerud at Easter
By DJKL
03rd Sep 2019 09:54

I would not- you could have your soul sucked out of you trying to get HMRC to deal with the position (unless you have a patronus charm) , the better approach, which you have more control over, is pay the cheque in to your company and then issue a cheque from your company with the correct reference to HMRC when the CT falls due.

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