Member Since: 31st Mar 2009
30+years experience in practice and a little bit here n there on the dark-side.
6th Feb 2017
RTI, I can sympathise. Due to the hours spent calling, a couple of contacts in the resolution team and I are getting to know one another quite well!
If you have clients like mine, they're always on the phone or dropping by (good that they ask first before doing something rash) and so that's when I have a little convo about it. Takes 5 mins on top of the FRS bombshell and saves posting letters that they never read through anyway.
6th Feb 2017
Smokoe Joe wrote:
Tell them what?
Do exactly what HMRC/government are doing to us - tell them what you know now and how little meat there is on the bones. Point out the changes every chance you get so they know this is being made up as they go and why you can't say with certainty what this does mean for them.
Explain that whilst government once worked quite sensibly in working out what it planned to do, how to do it and then announced it, this changed because the a***holes in the civil service believe they have to have something to say to keep the press quiet. So they simply announce what they want to do and then hope they can find a way to do it.
This has found sympathy and understanding among our clients who appreciate being told the truth, even if it is a load of bullocks. They often see similar things in their compliance regs.
MTD is just the latest edition of made up on a Monday and announced on a Tuesday garbage, just like changes to Employer Allowance and taxation of dividends were announced before the detailed guidance was thought up.
I despair of a nation that'll go out in their drives to moan about Trump but sit on their asses[***] when something really affects them.
Yes, It's a grumpy Monday
6th Feb 2017
It is my experience, talking to perhaps upwards of 250 business owners in the region that one of the biggest reasons that there has been no backlash from the business owner community is that very few accountants have actually bothered to tell them.
The number of people blissfully unaware of the impending doom is as much down to lack of common media debate as it is our not informing clients IN DETAIL of what this means to us and them.
"My accountant hasn't mentioned any of this" is all I ever seem to hear. Do more to help the cause - tell everyone you meet, not just clients and then, maybe, there might be a sudden realisation before it is too late.
11th Jan 2017
Considering what many of us experience when taking on new clients, perhaps CH should be rejecting more often.
There are myriad examples of accounts with the wrong FRSSE or negative balance sheets with no going concern note or simple errors of reporting. A lot of this is down to blind trust in the software 'getting it right' rather than the preparer having the knowledge to know it is wrong or omitting something.
Knowing the disclosure requirements, what year's standards and such is a part of doing a professional job. If you don't know enough, you shouldn't be charging people for it - you wouldn't expect a 30something sales assistant to have a go at flying your holiday plane, so why do those who hold themselves out as accountants 'fly' the accounts prep for others?
On a similar vein, how many people can still work out whether the payroll software churns out the correct numbers and do you ever check?
Accountants in practice ARE SUPPOSED TO BE PEDANTIC!!!
11th Jan 2017
...It APPEARS that the leading zero was missed off the registration number...
Surely it is not beyond the wit of CH programmers to write a routine that looks past this obvious and common error?...
Until company number 10000000 was issued last year, dropping the initial zero would not have seen rejections. Having had the clock tick over from 0 to 1, I guess they must now have the full 8 digit reference and so it isn't suite so pedantic.
21st Nov 2016
I have one specific client where the RTI data was captured fine for months 1 and 2, then went awry from mth 3. The error is a shortfall of liability and now my client has amassed an overpayment >£6k...which, of course, they haven't.
This has been passed to the resolutions unit/team who, I was informed, "will probably not get back before the end of the tax year"!
Can anyone explain why, when we file electronically with full html tagging on every little bit of info, the HMRC system does not update near instantly?
If I go to Australia and use my debit card, then check online banking using my smart phone, the transaction appears within 1 minute. How can this not be replicated by HMRC systems?
As for the constantly shifting sands that are payments by 'customers' and their mysterious, flexing allocation methodology. Well...
19th Sep 2016
The problem with many of these mis-classifications is that you get no choice when registering for VAT and FRS at the same time...at least not without meddling with the SIC code classifications.
Once past giving a company an SIC, the registration system chooses for you (as recently as this morning). The solution is to VAT register and then follow up with a paper FRS application form should you not like the percentage given.
One would like to think this will now be changed.
6th Jan 2016
'Bloke down the pub' accountants at it again
My concerns are that you are going to have less accurate information supplied and in some cases on purpose:
I had a call on Monday from a client stating he wanted to dis-incorporate and return to sole trade, after a 'bloke down the pub' conversation. He believes that our fees will be too much for dealing with this quarterly (we haven't actually spoken to him about fees yet!) and, if he's doing it himself, he will be able to make it look as if he's earned less. Oh my!
I doubt that he is the only person in this situation and suspect many 'bloke down the pub' accountants will be bandying this around in the coming months. Expect a few calls along those lines.
With that in mind, has anyone seen anything to suggest that HMRC are going to require periodical examination of the info supplied and by whom. I doubt that HMRC have the resources to carry out annual checks on all taxpayers, so this will lead to that £6·5bn hole getting bigger.
The PTA et al. may be a part of an even bigger plan; including such ideas as - once (and if) you get everyone quarterly reporting, why not require all businesses to be VAT registered with a lower rate for the up to £100k turnover. This, of course, does not affect the tax-lock promises.
It's quite possibly about meeting the deficit reduction target too. Government is, I think somebody on here mentioned recently, for some reason on cash accounting. Therefore, if this works sooner, George can bring in the quarterly payment of taxes, advancing sufficient funds to give him a buffer against unforeseen poor growth figures, etc.
3rd Dec 2015
Institutes/Associations and other bodies
Surely, this type of issue is exactly what these bodies we pay towards are meant to take up on behalf of everyone? With 'n' hundred thousand members between them, they *should* carry enough clout with the relevant people to cause pause for thought on expanding the digital scene at the very least.
By which I would expect them to stand together with a joint working party, not as individual bodies since this is fundamental to theway things are going to be.
No wonder there are more and more disillusioned practitioners dropping these bodies if they can't organise more than a cheese and wine evening to entertain one another.
20th Mar 2015
Ultimately is this a dumbing down exercise?
Pray tell me what the OTS have come up with?
Absorption of NI into other taxes was one of theirs wasn't it? I recall 2017 being mentioned as the 'implementation by' date way back whenever. The last we heard about this was "it's a lot more complicated to implement than we thought".
As a profession, we are open to change and accept it must happen. We have been through SSAPs, FRSs, IFRSs, new FRSs, computers, online filing, Finance Acts, Companies & various Taxes Acts, learnt what changes they meant and accepted them all. This latest wheeze just seems to be an ideological plot from people that have never operated in a commercial environment but have books on 'things' from which they pluck the most zany passages and believe they work in reality as well as fantasy.
If you have tried to use bank uploads, you will know that unless all payments/receipts are Direct Debits, you still have plenty of 'where do you want to allocate this' queries from the software. Software (at present) can never know where a cheque or paying-in book reference should be posted because you can't give garner sufficient details from the bank. Are HMRC going to stipulate that the banks input the payee from cheques and note the reverse side of paying-in slips for e-statement inclusion?
There will be more work as a result for accountants, however it will be low skilled work and not what we trained for.
I fear the lunatics are now in full control and the walls of the asylum will shortly be entombing the sane