Member Since: 19th May 2011
Jennifer Adams is Consulting Editor of AccountingWEB and is a professional business author specialising in corporate governance and taxation. She runs her own accounting and consultancy business with offices based in Surrey and Dorset.
22nd Jul 2020
philaccountant is absolutely right.
Ages ago when this MTD fiasco was first announced we all thought that the real reason was quarterly payments for all and guess what.... our fears have come to fruition.
However, I'm going to follow Tornado's stance.
22nd Jul 2020
I read Lucy's article and thought 'good'!
What was the taxpayer thinking of!
What a waste of HMRC's time and (our) money in having to defend this case.
Now if the taxpayer had done as many I know do ... buy house, do it up, live there for a year or so and then sell... then she might have got away with at least two of the properties being PPR.
What is interesting is what resources HMRC used to check the taxpayers address
"HMRC pointed to the fact that Hashmi had obtained Volkswagen finance in April 2013 and had opened a Barclays bank account in July 2013, giving her address for both applications as Shaggy Calf Lane, when she claimed to be living at Crown Leys."
21st May 2020
Late or non payment of fees is very difficult in the current situation but I think you need to consider what you would do if the virus was not around.
I have a couple of clients who have outstanding invoices despite payment by instalments on account and I've been told in no uncertain terms that they will pay when they have the money.
Usually I would have gone into 'CCJ- mode'. That is 2 x statements then a final demand and then straight to CCJ. Usually just the threat is enough but I'm holding back because they have promised they will pay in full (not like yours and do a deal) and I know that they would pay if they could (as has been said - know your client).
However... your client obviously knows what he's at and will prob ignore any CCJ threat anyway. Also it will take a while to get to court - pre corona it was about 6 months anyway.
What is the worse is that they think they can do this and expect you to lie down and take it. I wonder whether they would not pay their solicitor?
So I would say do the last point in your list - sack them and take them to court. You will lose them but you also will have your pride in your work that you've done a good job and they are just taking the p-ss.
I wouldnt accept their offer of 30% - that demeans your work.
You will also not have to worry about them any more.
You will find other clients to replace them - ones that appreciate what you do and will pay ontime and in full.
29th Apr 2020
Unfortunately at the beginning of the lockdown (before the schemes were announced) I told my clients that I would not be charging. I thought it would be extra advice not completing forms myself.
Then I completed the CJRS forms.
It took me hours.
I'm torn - shall I charge or shall I do as craig has done and ask them to give the money to charity? My guess is that clients wont do the latter so I think I'll charge a nominal amount.
I suppose I could then give the money to charity on behalf of the business and send clients some confirmation that I have done so.
2nd Apr 2020
Thank you everyone for your comments.
I would make just one final observation.
Look on any accountants website and they all say the same thing 'Come to us/ we're wonderful/ we go the extra mile/ we become part of your team - not just seeing you once a year/ we give a personal service.'(note the word 'personal')
If you read the blog carefully you will see that I did give practical advice.
I would just say that my firm has been in business for over 45 years. I have been the main partner for 15 years. Some of my clients have been clients for over 30 years.
I've been with them through divorces, getting their mortgages, cessation of businesses, family deaths - been to the funerals of spouses,and invariably they have paid me on time. I've been with them at the start of their businesses, through the times when they have grown, taken on new staff - so the least I can do is listen.
It only takes a few minutes.
31st Mar 2020
Thank you for your comments Zoe. As the others have said - all your words ring true.
As you will read in my blog - my first client rang the day before lock down to say 'I've three weeks money... thats it'.
My blog can be found here:
'I've spent most of this week upset' = 17 comments so far
I've said the same to most - 'Fight.. dont give up.. fight for your business that you have tried to hard to build - and keep me in the loop'.
31st Mar 2020
Do they read what you send out you ask?
Well actually mine have.
But I've tailored each email to the different types of client so they are not bombarded... which is what I told them at the beginning. I said I would only send what I know was correct.
I've sent separate one email to the self employed following the Fri announcement, one to the shops etc that I know will have to close down and a couple more to the directors so they dont get confused and have to search through the standard email for all.
And I have been thanked.
I've seen some accountants just send a blanket notice to all clients.
I've also directed them to the FSB webinar and many have taken up the suggestion.
31st Mar 2020
Fine... most of us submit online anyway.
But may I put a small hint of an idea forward to the government..as a 'thank you' to all the small businesses that are taking the brunt of the corona virus (or rather those that actually stay in business)... dare we hope for a delay of say 5 years until the full MTD is implemented?
Or better still.. just forget all about it as these next few years will be austerity and MTD is going to cost those SME's a lot.
18th Mar 2020
I'm going to say something controversial here and more in hope than anything else... dare we hope for a delay in MTD?
4th Mar 2020
Pity... Nigel got there before me!
Thank you everyone for your comments (28 I see!) but there is no point in writing two articles on the same subject!