CGMA Compass taking Management Accounting to the next level Reply

I have been privileged to have been working with CGMA and taking part in the Global Management Accounting Principles:

1. Self-assessment Tool Pilot Community

2: Pioneer Advocates

CGMA Compass followed on from the worlds first management accounting standard.

BSI, the business standards company, has published PAS 1919:2016 Guide to management accounting principles. The guide which was sponsored by CIMA (Chartered Institute of Management Accountants) also saw collaborative input from such organizations as Environment Agency, Fujitsu, NHS and Siemens.

Designed as a best-practice guide to management accounting, defining what “good” looks like, PAS 1919 provides organizations with a framework to support their decision making and contribute to overall improved performance and sustained success.

The finance function is key to unlocking value across the organisation to drive performance and success.  Yet business leaders are under increasing pressure. Quality decision making is essential but impulse often takes the place of insight.

As your finance function transforms itself to deal with challenges and harness opportunities, how do you measure success?

Underpinned by the Global Management Accounting Principles©, the CGMA Compass is an online self-assessment diagnostic that enables organisations to gain a 360 degree view of the strengths and weaknesses of the finance function to drive effectiveness.

This is achieved by assessing performance against the 14 management accounting practice areas outlined in the Principles:

  • Cost transformation and management
  • External reporting
  • Financial strategy
  • Internal audit
  • Internal control
  • Investment appraisal
  • Pricing, discount and product decision
  • Project management
  • Regulatory adherence and compliance
  • Resource management
  • Risk management
  • Strategic tax management
  • Treasure and tax management
  • Management and budgetary control

Analysis is provided in the form of heat maps – presenting rich data in an easy to read format which highlights aspects of high performance alongside those where improvements can be made.

With all of this insight you will:

  • Build confidence and trust by increasing business resilience, preserving value.
  • Join the dots and understand how things are being done in practice.
  • Shape the conversations which drive good decisions.
  • Put finance at the heart of business decision-making.
  • Build a shared understanding of levers for value creation, transform information into insight.
  • Better manage risk and capitalise on new opportunities

Don’t miss Samantha Louis, Association of International Certified Professional Accountants presenting the CGMA Compass Webinar on 30th October at 12.30!

Webinar sign-up: http://www.cimaglobal.com/Events/Events/Finance-Proving-youre-more-than-just-an-overhead/

CGMA Compass web information: https://www.cgma.org/cgmacompass

You can also get further details from alpa.saujani@aicpa-cima.com

I fully endorse and recommend CGMA Compass, its a first class management tool

steve@bicknells.net

Are your spouses wages tax deductible? Reply

Any salary paid will be subject to Income Tax and National Insurance as well as having to comply with National Minimum Wage and Auto Enrolment.

But you can only use the cost as a business tax deduction if:

  1. Its ‘wholly and exclusively’ for the benefit of the business
  2. The payment must reflect the actual work done and be realistic
  3. The payment must be shown in the accounts
  4. The wages must actually be paid
  5. If you provide for wages they must be paid within 9 months of the end of the accounting period

Mark McLaughlin explains more in this video and tells about a recent case involving a Heating Engineer and his wife. Mark is a brilliant tax writer and I have already order his next book ‘Tax Planning 2017/18’

The rules don’t only cover spouses, they also cover other family members.

 

 

 

There are many other pitfalls relating to other ways to share income such as dividends.

The s660 rules (or settlements legislation) have been around since the 1930s.

The rules stop you passing income to someone else in the family, or giving income or assets to someone else in an effort to reduce your overall tax bill. This is called a “settlement”, and the aim of the legislation is to stop people settling their income on another person who pays tax at a lower rate. (Contractor UK)

steve@bicknells.net

How do DIY builders reclaim VAT? Reply

You can apply for a VAT refund on building materials and services if you’re:

  • building a new home
  • converting a property into a home
  • building a non-profit communal residence – eg a hospice
  • building a property for a charity

The building work and materials have to qualify and you must apply to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) within 3 months of completing the work.

But its important to note..

https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/vat-construction/vconst24350

When a sole proprietor or partnership is in the business of constructing property for sale and builds a house on his own land for his own occupation, or by a connected person, he can either:

  • recover the VAT through his VAT return in the normal way

or

  • claim the VAT through the Refund Scheme.

Until 1 January 2011, a sole proprietor or partnership (in the business of constructing property for sale) who built a house on his own land for his own occupation, or by a connected person, could either:

  • recover the VAT through his VAT return in the normal way

or

  • claim the VAT through the DIY Refund Scheme.

After 1 January 2011, however, this choice is no longer available to him and it will only be possible to recover VAT through his return to the extent that the services and materials will be used for taxable business purposes. Where the house has not been constructed for a business purpose it will not be possible to claim back the VAT through his return. The only option that will now be available to him will be to make a claim through the Refund Scheme.

Companies and other corporate bodies who build dwellings for their staff or officers of the company can’t make a Refund Scheme claim because the tax is incurred in the course or furtherance of their business.

VAT incurred in relation to staff accommodation is input tax and can be recovered through the company’s VAT return, subject to the normal rules.

As such the only way to recover the VAT is by making a DIY claim for the cost of materials and this should be made as one claim within 3 months of completion.

steve@bicknells.net

HMRC lose first case to fine a Senior Finance Officer for errors 1

All companies must deliver correct and complete tax returns.

A company may not be able to do this if its tax accounting arrangements are not fit for purpose. These arrangements will range from how it accounts for its business transactions to how it works out its final tax liability.

Schedule 46 FA09 sets out rules for certain large companies. Those companies must establish and maintain their tax accounting arrangements and their Senior Accounting Officer (SAO) is responsible for ensuring that they do.

This guidance tells the reader about

  • the rules that put responsibilities on those companies and particularly their SAOs
  • the actions that those companies and SAOs must take
  • how HMRC will ensure that they comply with the rules, and
  • the penalties chargeable if they fail to comply.

The way in which HMRC ensures compliance with the SAO rules is consistent with HMRC’s wider strategy for Mid-sized and Large Businesses by which we seek to build and maintain open and transparent relationships with companies and to work collaboratively with them in real time to reduce their level of tax compliance risk.

Currently SAO rules only apply to large companies (turnover of £200m plus) but will HMRC extent this to smaller companies?

Senior Accounting Officer Main duty: what is the main duty

The main duty of a Senior Accounting Officer (SAO) is to take reasonable steps to ensure that a qualifying company, see SAOG11000, establishes and maintains appropriate tax accounting arrangements.

This means, in particular, that the SAO must take reasonable steps to

  • monitor the accounting arrangements of the company and
  • identify any respects in which those arrangements are not appropriate tax accounting arrangements.

Penalties

A penalty of £5,000 is charged for the following failures:

  • Failure by the company to notify HMRC of the name and contact details of its SAO
  • Failure by the SAO to carry out their main duty under the rules
  • Failure by the SAO to provide a certificate to HMRC, or providing a certificate that contains a careless or deliberate inaccuracy.

The penalty is payable by the person responsible for the failure, as above.  The penalties are at a flat rate and cannot be mitigated.

K Thathiah v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 601 (3 August 2017)

The FTT found that a senior accounting officer (SAO) had not breached his main duty under FA 2009 Sch 46.

The case related to VAT errors totaling £1.3m despite providing ‘clean’ certificates, however, it was decided that reasonable steps were being taken to ensure the accuracy of VAT returns for example setting up a team, providing training and using an agent.

I think all SAO’s should take this a warning! get the right systems and procedures or face personal penalties

steve@bicknells.net

HMRC Tax Experts to directly advise growing businesses Reply

On the 20th September 2017 HMRC announced

A new service to directly help mid-sized businesses as they expand and grow, has been launched today by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

There are around 170,000 mid-sized businesses registered in the UK. Businesses with either a turnover of more than £10 million or more than 20 employees, and undergoing significant growth, can now seek expert help from HMRC growth support specialists.

Known as the Growth Support Service, HMRC tax experts will offer dedicated support, tailored to the customer’s needs. It has been created to help growing, mid-sized businesses access the information and services they need.

This could include:

  • helping with tax queries about their growing business

  • supplying accurate information and co-ordinating technical expertise from across HMRC

  • supporting them to get their tax right first time and access relevant incentives or reliefs

I wonder if HMRC have plans to help other businesses too?

steve@bicknells.net

 

1 in 5 Estate Agents are expected to go bust! Reply

According to a report published by accountancy firm Moore Stephens in July (reported in the Independent), a total of 19 per cent of estate agents – or 4,928 out of the 25,560 across the country – are showing signs of financial insolvency.

There are two major factors behind the figures

Online Agents

The growth of agents like Purple Bricks, Right Move, Zoopla and others.

The offer lower fees and easy access which is putting high street agents under pressure to cut their fees.

Reduced Activity

The volume of house sales.

The level of property sales is still below where it was before the 2007/8 financial crisis. In the year to March, 1.2 million properties were sold, marking a 32 per cent decrease on the pre-crash high of 1.7 million. [Independent]

steve@bicknells.net

When is a Van not a Van? when its a VW Transporter Kombi! Reply

It makes a big difference whether a vehicle is treated as a Car or a Van for tax purposes, in summary:

  1. Benefit in Kind on Cars is linked to CO2 where as on a Van its Flat Rate (and could be zero if your private use is insignificant)
  2. Vans qualify for the Annual Investment Allowance, Cars have restricted Capital Allowances
  3. You can reclaim VAT on Vans but its much harder to reclaim VAT on cars

HMRC have some guidance in EIM23150….

Under this measure, a double cab pick-up that has a payload of 1 tonne (1,000kg) or more is accepted as a van for benefits purposes. Payload means gross vehicle weight (or design weight) less unoccupied kerb weight (care is needed when looking at manufacturers’ brochures as they sometimes define payload differently).

Under a separate agreement between Customs and the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), a hard top consisting of metal, fibre glass or similar material, with or without windows, is accorded a generic weight of 45kg. Therefore the addition of a hard top to a double cab pick-up with an ex-works payload of 1,010 kg will convert the vehicle into a car (net payload reduced to 965 kg). Under this agreement, the weight of all other optional accessories is disregarded. HMRC has also adopted this treatment.

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/manuals/eimanual/eim23150.htm

Kombi’s have been a grey area, but not any more, following the case of Noel Payne v HMRC as reported by Croner Taxwise…

Under ITEPA 2003 S.115, a van is a vehicle where its primary construction is for the conveyance of goods or burden.  Kombi vans and those similar have not previously been thought to fall into this category due to them being designed to carry both goods and people. Historically, HMRC has offered a concession from 2002/2003 onwards for vehicles of a very similar construction, double cab pickups (including both uncovered and covered models), if the payload capacity of the pickup exceeds a metric tonne. HMRC accepts that these vehicles can be treated as a van for benefit in kind purposes.

With such similarities in the construction of the Kombi van, this has led to this concession being applied to the Kombi vans as well. However, in Noel Payne vs HMRC, a judgment was reached that the primary construction of the kombi van was not for the conveyance of goods alone but rather that its purpose was for the conveyance of both goods and people equally. This means that the Kombi did not meet the requirement to be considered to be a van and therefore for benefit in kind purposes it is a car.

The advice from Croner is that from now on Kombi’s and any van built to carry passengers should now be treated as a car for benefit in kind purposes, the case did involve a Vivaro as well but that was manufactured as a Van and later converted so that was allowed to be treated as a Van.

This also has implications for VAT and Capital Allowances.

steve@bicknells.net

How will Clause 24 affect you? Reply

Clause 24 of the Finance Bill sets out restrictions for individuals on claiming mortgage interest as a cost against their property investment income, for individuals it will work as follows

2017/18 75% of the interest can be claimed in full and 25% will get relief at 20%

2018/19 50% of the interest can be claimed in full and 50% will get relief at 20%

2019/20 25% of the interest can be claimed in full and 75% will get relief at 20%

2020/21 100% will get only 20% relief

These rules will not apply to Companies, Companies will continue to claim full relief.

The rules also don’t apply to Furnished Holiday Lets.

Essentially Section 24 removes Interest from the property expenses and gives you tax relief at 20% (basic rate). So Higher rate tax payers will pay more tax.

The Mortgage Works have a spreadsheet calculator that demonstrates this and also incorporates other profits and income.

www.themortgageworks.co.uk/includes/xls/T1036_Tax_Change_Calculator.xlsx

steve@bicknells.net

Can you afford to be unethical? Reply

Until the financial crisis in 2008 it felt like very little was being done to stop tax avoidance or unethical behaviour by businesses, but the climate has now changed.

Just because something isn’t illegal it doesn’t mean its ethical or moral and customers are now holding businesses to account.

UK waste management agency Business Waste polled 2,000 shoppers about their high street habits and found that 90% said they take a business’s ethical record and accreditation into account when it comes to things like paying taxes and environmental issues.[startup donut]

For example, 95% look for hygiene certificates and 75% want to see indications that companies they use are taking care of the planet. In addition, 45% say they would only consider using businesses that pay their tax in the UK.

Since 2012 we have seen companies like Google, Amazon and Star Bucks held to account over tax by the public accounts committee.

Back in 2014 Fair Tax was launched to try to help promote businesses who pay taxes rather than trying to avoid paying

The Fair Tax Mark Criteria assess the quality of a business’ publicly available information on key tax and transparency issues. In this context, publicly available information primarily means a full set of accounts available to all via Companies House or the company website. However, it can also include the company website and/or any other freely available printed material.

For every business type, the criteria are divided into two main categories that assess a business on:

  • Transparency

  • Tax rate, disclosure and avoidance

http://www.fairtaxmark.net/

Its time that all businesses became ethical businesses!

steve@bicknells.net