Member Since: 24th Jun 2009
30th Mar 2017
I have used Andica for some years now. There was a problem with TaxCalc and I made the switch then. I wouldn't touch Iris with the proverbial bargepole.
17th May 2016
I really feel sorry for those using IRIS, They were a nightmare over the Freeway/Paypal business and I found their software to be very unreliable and help almost non-existent basically because they didn't know what they were doing. I have steered clear of them ever since despite them trying to get me to use their accounting software. I have just changed over to VT for the bookkeeping, it appears remarkedly simple but there doesn't appear to be an audit trail? OK for small sole traders etc but not for companies. We use Andica for our Returns - they seem excellent. We used to use TaxCalc for many years but they changed something, I cannot remember what, so we tried someone new.
20th Aug 2012
What about the bias
< It does seem that there's the prevailing opinion that all business owners are coining it in and there's a definite trend towards "kicking" the business at every opportunity.>
To me this appears to always have been the case and I have never been able to understand it. Local councils offer little or no support and are really hopeless at making decisions to a request (subcommittes of subcommittes of subcommittes - how else can they make their copious expenses) and appear to make many obstacles for small businesses. We paid into the council's "Town Centre Scheme" - what did we get in the year we were a member? 4 photographs of wanted local criminals. Absolutely nothing else. It was just another local tax.
As for council workmen. An aquaintance was running his own carpentry business for some years from the council workshop where he was the foreman. He eventually got a handshake to leave early. In the real world (as we used to say in the Revenue) he would have been sacked immediatel;y the bosses found out and not left to trade for years. I expect he did some handy work for the employees and council members. I am sure this goes on in many councils.
As for County Council workers - ever played "count the worker" on roadworks? The worst case was 20 workers and one working, the rest standing about yattering or smoking etc. Does help to pass the time on a long journey(:-).
1st Aug 2012
I have filed monthly returns for a small contractor for years - in fact since the new scheme started. He only uses a subbie a couple of so times a year and so most of his monthly returns are nil. All of a sudden he is being showered with Penalty letters, threats of bailiffs etc from some collector or other who told him (he says) that we have not sent in the required returns. I complained, of course, saying this was a defammatory statement as I print all the acceptances for future reference (paperless? Impossible when dealing with HMRC). I have received a letter saying that the collector should have been informed that there was no tax to pay each month. What is wrong with the thick b******s looking on the computer at the Return???? At a guess I suppose they want a payment slip showing 0.00 by post (@ 50pence a throw). I am going to fight this very loudly.
When I had more PAYE work (I am winding down) I always kept a copy of everything, especially the 20%/30% verification for subbies and have often had to use these hard copies to fight a client's corner.
TheAncientOne (who views old age as a possible eventual release from numbskulls at HMRC)
31st Jul 2012
All of the above happened to me and more Did all the things Michaelr205 did (except broker as there wasn't one). No one took it up, in fact the police were really rude to me (par for the course in this area - useless lazy bunch). £40,000 loan was involved which Dodgy got. I doubt he paid any of it back. Didn't bother sueing for unpaid fees - had seen too many others going down that path with him and he just ignored the CCJs and set his dogs on the bailiffs so got away with it.
Wouldn't bother with any of it again,wasted an awful lot of my time.
Word of warning Mr Dodgy is advertising a new business - a security firm in Kent and S London, using special german dogs he breeds.
8th Jun 2012
Club VAT Returns
As Roland 195 says - check the VAT. If you look at (previous to current admin) Returns it should give you an idea of average profit margins/turnover. We had two really well supported quite large clubs in my area go down because no one was interested in the admin of the club and the treasurer scarpered with cash, no Returns had been done for about a year and there was no money to pay the VAT when the missing Returns were calculated. Its a thankless task to be an (honest) treasurer. I always refuse the job.
25th May 2012
Troncs do still exist. We had one when we ran a restaurant 6 years ago so that all the staff (including the kitchen staff - which everyone seems to have forgotten) benefitted. It went into a pot and the staff were treated to a Christmas Celebration away somewhere, usually of their choice. We always had to add to the pot so that everyone had a good night out and paid for nothing - including drinks, taxis. Tips are on the low side in smaller restaurants so the staff did quite well out of it. (This included staff who had left during the year).
If we see a service charge on a bill we never return to that particular establishment. We tip well but wont be actually charged as we consider it is just an increase in the bill going directly to the proprietor and unlikely that the staff get the money.
27th Apr 2012
"The only thing I can think
"The only thing I can think it is good for is that the clients have no idea what a balance sheet is, its some type of accounting wizardry that is mandatory and they couldnt possibly do and thats why accountants charge a lot...That works ;o)"
I absolutely agree with this - sometimes when I have taken over from another accountant with a bound wad of accounts from a previous year I have found it to be utter twaddle.
When I first started out in 1996 I was advised by a friendly Tax Inspector not to send them a Balance Sheet for a small sole trader because (a) most of them could not read or understand one and (b) it gave a "foot in the door" for an investigation with those that could understand. As long as you do honest accounts that is enough. I have never had a client who asked for one. P&L and CA sheet only - bound, of course..
27th Apr 2012
Off point a bit, but when I was a COT and looking for a "non-taxpayer" I happened into a building which turned out to be an Undertaker's workshop (no bodies at the time). Their black humour was brilliant. If only they had fallen behind with their dues I could have gone back for another comedic visit!
26th Mar 2012
I seem to always proffer the wrong cheek and end up bumping noses, just cannot get it right somehow - probably because I would rather not although it does appear to have become the norm recently. "Normal" people appear quite happy to do this nowadays - when I was really young it was only the "dirty old men" - they always smelled revolting and slobberred from my memory.
When I was a teenager I worked in an outpost office of the (still) biggest firm of surveyors and architects and one of the latter was far too handy and thought women were fair game. I took some papers to his department and he grabbed me from behind and held me in a bear hug. I was horrified and jerked myself upright to get away - silly man, he always had a pipe in his mouth and I caught this really hard with my head pushing the pipe backwards into his throat nearly taking his tonsils out, he had a sore throat for days. He was not pleased but kept his distance - at least with me.