Minister stonewalls iXBRL delay request
Treasury minister David Gauke has batted back a request from six accountancy bodies to delay the 1 April implementation of mandatory Corporation Tax return efiling using the iXBRL format.
Responding to a letter last week from six tax and accountancy bodies, the minister wrote: “Having read your letter and considered it along with other representations, I would like you and HMRC to proceed on the basis that mandation of online filing in iXBRL will go ahead as planned on 1 April.”
Gauke added: “It seems to me that there will never be a perfect time to mandate filing in iXBRL. There will always be implementation challenges , and HMRC’s challenge here is to work through them in collaboration with the representative bodies.”
A PDF of the minister’s letter is available from the ICAS website.
ICAS assistant director of tax Donald Drysdale was disappointed and continued to fret about problems that were likely to arise during the transitional “soft landing” period after 1 April.
“While the potential benefits to HMRC are obvious, companies and tax agents are left picking up the costs,” he said. Most of them must rely on commercial software vendors, some of whom have failed to deliver their accounts preparation solutions in time. Other packages fail to offer the degree of automated iXBRL tagging that had been anticipated, leaving skilled staff with the cumbersome task of completing the tagging manually…
“We hoped [Gauke] would understand the extra costs a messy transition would impose on HMRC, and the unacceptable doubts, confusion and cost being heaped on businesses at a time when the government should be reducing administrative burdens.
“He has expressed the wish that any transitional issues should be managed effectively, emphasising that no-one who has made a reasonable effort to comply will be penalised and that anyone with real difficulties should contact HMRC. This is far from ideal, given that contacting HMRC can be an almost impossible task at the best of times.”
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