Practitioner's Diary: A Budget for - who?

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Or should that be whom? Our West Country general practitioner is not impressed either way.

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28 April - Just taken delivery of the firm's annual Budget brochures. Am I the only one who wonders if these are ever worth the money? It has always seemed to me that anyone interested in the Budget will get what they need on the day or the day after, especially with the Internet. I wonder how many people are actually going to read our guide.

I have had a better response this year from simply emailing a dozen key clients with a couple of highlights from the Budget that might be of particular relevance to them. They appreciated someone else sifting throu...

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By Anonymous
16th May 2009 21:51

Stephen - had a bit of a Eureka moment then. I had another look at my client's online VAT and still couldn't work it out - but on re-reading your comment realised I was in the wrong place.

As you said in your post, you need to send the client to the ( Government Gateway site, probably somewhere they never need to go, rather than to the HMRC website. There, under Manage Services as you quite rightly say, is a button to assign agents to each of the tax services you are enrolled for.

All I need to do now is find the firm's online details so I can fill this in!!

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By squay
29th Apr 2009 10:56

Assigning Agents for VAT Returns
Having logged in to the government gateway as the client click on "manage services on LHS. A list of services the client has enrolled for are listed with links on RHS to assign and manage agents. Once New Vat Returns assigned, log out and log in using your agents log in. Client should then be listed in your agency list.

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29th Apr 2009 09:45

RE: VAT Online Returns and DD Payment next year
These are draft changes to the regulations only at the moment and seem to require electronic payment rather than specifying DD. If approved will come into force from periods after 1/4/2010. Comments are to be made by 3/7/2009.

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24th Apr 2009 12:50

Single Integrated Visits
Regarding the single integrated compliance visits, one was trialled with one of my clients and it did not work. The tax man wanted to look at books from about 18 months ago while the VAT man wanted the current stuff. So you may only have to get your books out once but it will be about 2 years worth and you are answering questions on circumstances in different periods. The two individuals concerned were not very keen on the idea.

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By squay
21st Apr 2009 14:55

VAT online - Addendum
You may be a little confused or else I didn't make it clear for which I apologise. Once the client's gateway account has been activated by me and I've logged in to their account, I assign my agency to submit vat returns on their behalf. Then log out. The client then appears in my own agency list and I use my agency log in to handle their vat returns. No need to return the client's log in at all.

Then log in via my agency and set up their DD for them. Operating through your own agency makes it all above board and transparent. Only use the client's log in initially to assign your practice. That's the dodgy bit.

And yes I am vat registered. One of the few advantages to be able to submit vat returns for clients.

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By squay
14th Apr 2009 18:12

VAT Online
Yes it is a bad system but all you have to do is set up the client's Gateway account for them. When they receive the activation code they give it to you and complete the loop. Then log in as them and assign your practice for the "new vat returns service" (instant access) and "change vat details" (requires another activation code).

I've done this for many of my vat clients and as long as they know what you're doing there shouldn't be problem. You can direct all HMRC notices to your email address and manage the vat for them.

If you stop acting for a client, just change the password and give it to the client. But first unassign your practice as agent and redirect the HMRC emails back to them.

The first thing to do once you have access is to set up their direct debit for them.

Data protection should not be a problem if you keep the client informed all the time. The system is bad because you have to "pretend" to be the client. This is appalling in this day and age.

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14th Apr 2009 12:08

VAT online
It's horrible - you have to get the client to register themselves for online VAT and then through that system authorise you to do it.

I moan to HMRC every time I get the opportunity but it doesn't help.

At one working together event they acknowledged how bad that was and suggested we don't use it till it changes - works for me - except that n0ow I have to put a stamp on VAT returns


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