Accounts and Audit manager for a firm of accountants in the midlands.
I sing and play guitar. I do both loudly.
I recall Francois writing an article along these lines. Something to do with a mountain in its title. Mount Digital or something.
Most of our clients lump everything into one or two accounts (cost and dep'n) and we have to reanalyse them to post them into the correct places.
I have in past tried setting up proper fixed asset accounts in clients records but after a while they end up in a birrova pickle. Id rather sort out two accounts per category than four or five.
Don't think anything's changed
As far as I'm aware, it's still all going ahead despite the concerns I've read about. I've been following TaxCalc's blog of late as they seem to talk about all of this a lot.
From what I understand, we're looking at our clients (or us I presume) having to keep some digital bookkeeping records of some sort. It's the accounting data, or a summary thereof, that's somehow sent to HMRC on a quarterly basis. I don't think there's any detail on this yet.
This is going ahead from April 2018 for sole traders and landlords and from 2020 limited companies too.
This quashing of fears thing is probably to do with four actual returns, rather than four digital updates. HMRC posted some mythbuster thing a few months ago after the petition kicked off.
I don't see the point to any of it other than to one day raise taxes quarterly.
Controls and intuitionSome of our clients are pretty direct in their instructions to their staff but I like to think that their finance people would double check anything that looks dodgy. Most owners of small companies have direct access to their company bank accounts anyway.
Bigger clients have more robust controls in place for sure.
Can't really see it happening.
Should be fineI suspect all will be ok with the set up that you have but am interested to hear if it doesn't work. You learn something new every day and all that.
Win7 and IE 11 should be fine.
If you're using the howsmyssl website that HMRC links to, it checks a variety of things and come out with an overall statement. There are lots of factors that can affect this. If the version bit says TLS 1.2 is the version being used, all should be good.
I wouldn't necessarily use IE though. I would imagine that Firefox and Chrome should give you ok or perhaps even good results.
Wrong argumentI really don't think saying commercial software is clunky will wash since I expect that considerably more CT returns are filed using it than without. I see more threads on here about what software to use, few recommend HMRC and every firm I've worked for since 1997, small and big, has used something. So I wouldn't be surprised if it was a really high percentage.
In my case, I know I'm an accountant when…
… I've prepared the accounts of a furniture manufacturer or clothing importer or whatever, see how much these things cost in shops and then tell my missus I'm not going to be opening my wallet for that size of markup!
I went looking for a form today…
I don't often have reason to go on the site, so it's all a bit new still to me but had need to go looking for a form today. Took me a fair bit longer than I thought it would.
Why can't we have hmrc.gov.uk back? I knew where I was going back then. Seems crackers to think how everything has been bunched into one monolithic site. I sincerely hope that the old urls are going to be kept pointing into the site so we don't have to start from gov.uk's home page!
If I were starting up...
... which I'm still hoping to do once I've saved enough, I'd be going with TaxCalc. Have checked a few of these products out now and I suggest you do too. They're all slightly different from each other.
Yeah, I think that's where it's heading. No new taxes or tax hikes of any significance... just get existing taxes in earlier.
My predictionsI think we'll see a change to salary sacrifice schemes and a reduction in the amount of time a limited company has to pay its CT.
I've also been mulling over CGT. Given the hit to landlords with stamp duty and interest relief restrictions, I wonder if there will be a change to property when disposed? Slightly higher rate on cashing out perhaps?
There will always be complianceSurely all this automation requires clients to get on board too? When I think about the kinds of clients the firm I work for represent, I can't see this changing. They want to be running their businesses like they always have and employ us to handle this stuff for them. We've got the odd client keeping their books on old versions of tasbooks. If we said to them "we want you to use this now" they just wouldn't. Compliance work will be our bread and butter for some time to come I'm sure.
Oh that's a shame
I enjoy your blog!
Adopt or ignore
I tend to agree with Mr Reeves and Mr Checkley. It's up to us to tell our suppliers what we want out of this, for them to get that from HMRC and then to make it.
Also, it sounds like we can take what we want from it or ignore it. As I said in another thread, I'm interested in seeing where this goes.
Feels differentNotwithstanding the comments about help lines and those without internet access, this strategy feels different in that I don't remember a minister getting involved before.
I'd be keen to see what comes of it.
Happy Birthday?If I'm reading this right, I think a "happy birthday" is in order.
Must say I've not enjoyed a blog so much since the FD's diary. Keep it up!
Just in the nick of time!
Thanks for this article. I'm seriously thinking of starting up my own practice and want to get my fees onto the right footing from the start.
I was advised once by a partner of a firm I used to work for to consider what I'd like to earn per hour and then treble it. One third for me, one third for admin time, overhead and unforeseen costs (like phone calls) and one third for profit to bank for future investment (or to keep).