Member Since: 4th May 2004
31st Dec 2020
From what you have, said I doubt any claim against a previous employer would be successful. A usual contract of employment would specify that any client obtained during the course of the employment was that of the employer, and there would be clauses specifically preventing poaching should an employee set up for themselves. The clause could be in supplementary documents, not in the main contract. I would politely suggest money spent on lawyers could be wasted.
20th Nov 2020
One of my friends happened to mention something unremarkable about his client's business to the spouse, was reported to his professional body, and duly taken through disciplinary, was fined, etc. Do not breath a word of what you know, it is client confidential and must remain so.
6th Oct 2020
This could be serious - a friend of mine was accused of breaching confidentiality and was taken to the cleaners by his professional body. (I do not know the details, but I suspect it was an equally innocent exchange.) You have no independent record of the discussion with the husband. I would suggest you disengage with the client immediately. I would also recommend you find another golf partner - you should have done this ages ago. The age old advice applies - do not mix business and pleasure.
6th Oct 2020
It is not up to the accountant as to when a company has its year end, it is up to the directors of the company. I'd just accept that they were all spaced out throughout the year and give them deadlines to work to on the basis your work has to be planned and - if they are late - then they will be fined. You'll soon train them into doing the work properly!
2nd Oct 2020
I started doing studies in my own time and, as a result, got into the right job. If you are not happy about your accounting skills, you could always get a copy of the AAT exam papers and think through how you would get on. I am sure it will all come back very quickly, so you could go straight to ATT. I agree, a spell in HMRC would do a lot for a tax career, but do not stop too long as you need to keep a commercial edge.
30th Sep 2020
If you check out S787(2) of the Income Tax (Trading and other Income) Act 2005, the test for a residence for the purpose of the legislation is "If a building, or part of a building, is designed for permanent use as a single residence is temporarily divided into two or more separate residences, it is still treated as a single residence." From this and the description of the installation of a kitchen and bathroom in the basement space, I would regard as a permanent division of the building into two households. This is why I would take the view that there needs to be some connectivity between the main part of the house and the basement flat to show it is a "temporary" division. This could be very relevant if the flat were to be used for an elderly relative at some time in the future. I still maintain that there are building regs, planning, mortgagor's consent, insurance and other matters which need the client's consideration and which could cost a lot more than the tax element of this. Furthermore, on the tax front we should remember HMRC wanted to tighten up the "shared occupancy test" but this was dropped from the 2019 Finance Bill; I have no doubt it will be brought back at some time in the future.
29th Sep 2020
The rent a room relief can be an entire floor of a house, but it does not apply where it has been converted into separate flats. From the description the basement has been converted into a separate flat as its only access is from the outside of the building and it has all the amenities of a dwelling. Furthermore the rent a room relief expects the room or series of rooms to be furnished. I do not know whether this applies in this instance. From the description we have been given, rent a room relief does not apply.
28th Sep 2020
I note the inclusion of a bathroom and kitchen to the basement. Have building regulations been complied with? With a basement converted into what is effectively a dwelling building regs certificate would be essential. All local authorities are getting rather jittery around changes which could cause a fire risk ... yet alone the usual requirements for correct installation of kitchens, bathrooms and their connection to the public sewers and water supplies. Planning is yet another matter. No - rent a room does not apply without full access to the house.
8th Sep 2020
Is this something to do with NatWest trying to get all their business clients to use their accounting software? and charge them?
8th Sep 2020
Yes, please report them. All professional bodies take a dim view of people operating without practicing certificates, without professional indemnity insurance, without letters of engagement, without due diligence for Money Laundering purposes, etc. Their employers will also be infinitely upset as client poaching could occur (GDPR breaches?), yet alone loss of attention to their clients' business by moonlighting with their respective partners. OK, the business is being organised through their respective partners, but this is a sham. We do not want people who are going to bring the profession into disrepute as it reflects badly on all qualified accountants. However, our professional bodies should also spend more on educating the public as to why they should only use a qualified accountant with a practising certificate.