Member Since: 5th Feb 2004
1st May 2017
Having spoken to a number of fellow Accountants, we all agree that whilst it is useful for someone searching the company's file to know who controls it, it is also the case that we want to know precisely who all of the shareholders are. At the moment we rely on past annual Returns, but it will not be long before these are completely out of date.
Please, Companies House, include both controllers AND shareholders available in a search.
28th Apr 2008
1st Tax Rule for Agents
Take out a Professional Expenses Insurance policy (PEI).
My practice has all-business cover and client decide personal cover with Abbey Tax. All businesses are fully covered for Full Enquiries, but not Aspect which are usually an open and shut affair (although they would be covered if an Aspect became a Full). Business clients are invited to subscribe for "Fee Insurance", and sufficient numbers do so to enable my practice to just break even. Any uninsured clients can be invited to subscribe if a Full Enquiry is opened on them. Abbey Tax have a superb back-up service, and technical points can be discussed with their consultants on their free advice line (this is not an advert for Abbey Tax).
The best way to lose a client is to have a Full Enquiry, unless PEI cover is in place, because it is not usually easy to recover fees in full. Clients tend to have a perception that it is all the Agent's fault! With PEI in place, fees are not an issue because they are recoverable in full from the insurer which means the agent can go the extra mile to achieve results.
To quote a real life example, after a Corporation Tax full enquiry had been open for over 12 months, the Inspector was finally a settlement mood, and very little was found other than the fact that he wanted to disallow the cost of building a strong room for a cheque cashing company. My client was keen to agree to a contracted settlement presented for consideration until I pointed out that my extra time in arguing the case would cost his company nothing at all, and there could be a significant outcome, particularly as penalties and interest were at stake. He therefore agreed and I subsequently argued the case for Capital Allowances to be given as originally claimed and won. The resulting small amount of additional tax was adjusted by way of a Notice of Amendment to a Company Tax Return, with no contracted settlement or penalties. My firm's total fees were £3,750 + VAT, settled in full by Abbey Tax.
The most surprising aspect of the enquiry was that, even with the assistance of Revenue Accountants, the Inspector could not grasp simple double entry book-keeping! (but that is another story).
Tony R Pomfret
Tony R Pomfret & Associates
11th Oct 2007
Congratulations to Drummohr for winning the Tax & Practice Software category. This is thoroughly deserved, because the software is so user friendly. My practice has used TaxAssistant for 8 years and I would not dream of using anything else.
2nd Mar 2007
I have a small practice submitting over 450 individual, partnership, trust and CT600 self assessment tax returns per annum. I can thoroughly recommend Drummohr's Tax Assistant software, having used it now for 8 years.
We find the software so simple to use, and 100% of our 2005/06 returns were submitted via FBI Courier the vast majority of which were submitted in less than 2 minutes, even on 31/1/07!
The software is fully comprehensive, and we have not come across any situation yet that is not catered for. All Capital Gains are fully calculated with indexation and taper relief, as are share options, top slicing relief on life policy encashments, age relief, capital allowances, etc. There is a facility to import accounts from accounts production software. We use Eureka.
We have the facility to submit attachments such as accounts with CT600's.
The only limitation is that imposed by the Revenue, such as rebasing the financial year end for sole traders or partners. The software will automatically calculate the utilisation of overlap relief by creating 2 self employment or partnership returns, but the Revenue's computer cannot accept this. The work around is to prepare one return for the later period, enter the earlier year's profit in box 3.77 and attach the accounts, computation and claim for capital allowances as a separate document. The last return with rebasing I submitted produced a repayment for my client of over £6,000 in 3 days!
What is more the software is quite inexpensive and has excellent technical assistance on the very rare occasion that it is required. Your computer can be set to automatically receive the latest updates. 2007 returns have just been made available.
Why use anything else?
11th Jan 2006
Revenue "no longer required" notices
I totally ignore and file such notices, unless the client is a Director, or I am aware of continuing non-taxed income, in which case I immediately take the matter up with the Revenue. As all of our tax returns have been submitted by FBI for well over 18 months we have access to all of our clients on the IR Portal, where a lot of information is available, including whether tax returns have been issued and whether they have been filed. Invaluable!
The latest Revenue ploy to impede our progress which was encountered today is to ask for the original Government Gateway authorisation (issued over 2 years ago) when we have established a 64-8 authority, but the client does not appear on our client list on the IR Portal, and we cannot FBI. Rediculous!!