Is this the End of National Insurance? Reply

Pay Packet And Banknotes

You pay National Insurance contributions to qualify for certain benefits including the State Pension.

You pay National Insurance if you’re:

  • 16 or over
  • an employee earning above £155 a week
  • self-employed and making a profit of £5,965 or more a year

The Office of Tax Simplification is currently beginning a process of looking at merging National Insurance with Income Tax.

OTS NI TOR

ACCA’s head of tax Chas Roy-Chowdhury warned that an alignment of NI and income tax rates would be crucial prior to a merger taking place.

Whilst This is Money reported…

Middle and high earners could see their tax bills jump under radical plans to merge income tax and National Insurance, a tax expert has warned.

People taking home £50,000 a year could be £230 worse off, but low earners on £20,000 would save more than £530, and those on £30,000 would come out around £380 ahead, according to snap research by Tilney Bestinvest on the potential tax shake-up.

Chancellor George Osborne wants to reduce ‘complexity’ in the tax system to make it clearer exactly how much people have to cough up, and has ordered the Office of Tax Simplification to see if there is a case for change.

This change is also likely to lead to changes to Pension tax relief reform, Your Money reported…
The government has already announced a consultation on the pension tax relief system, and I believe that a merger of income tax and NI would likely result in the floated idea of a pension with ISA-like tax treatment. This is because at present, a basic rate taxpayer gets 20% tax relief on pension payments but surely this would increase to 32% under a combined system. It seems illogical to increase tax relief at a time when they are actually trying to reduce the cost to the Exchequer. An equal tax treatment of ISAs and pensions could be a prelude to merging the two, potentially drawing ISAs into some form of limetime allowance.
steve@bicknells.net

Abolition of under 21 NI Reply

hübsche brünette studentin

From 6th April 2015 every employer with employees under the age of 21 will no longer be required to pay class 1 secondary NI on earnings below the upper earnings limit (£815 per week).

In line with the change, HMRC are introducing 7 new National Insurance Table Letters to be used from April 2015 to cater for these employees as follows:

Three of the new letters (V, I and K) will be removed in April 2016 in line with the ending of ‘contracted-out’ status in relation to salary-related occupational pension schemes. [Brightpay]

steve@bicknells.net

Have you paid too much National Insurance? Reply

dreamstimefree_75244

Unlike Income Tax which is cumulative and assessed across all earnings, National Insurance starts from zero on each individual employment and you also pay National Insurance on Self Employed earnings.

So if you are a Director of multiple businesses paid as an employee its easy to see how you could over pay and you might not even realise because National Insurance is not shown on your Self Assessment Return.

You can also over pay National Insurance if you are a part time employee with multiple employers and irratic earnings, this because National Insurance is calculated on a weekly/monthly basis, not a cumulative basis and its by employer.

What you need to do

Write to HM Revenue and Customs confirming:

  • your National Insurance number
  • why you’ve overpaid
  • the tax year(s) you’ve overpaid

You should include your P60 or a statement from your employer showing the tax and National Insurance for each year you’re claiming for.

You should apply within 6 years of the tax year you’re claiming for.

HM Revenue and Customs
Payment Reconciliation
National Insurance Contributions Office
Benton Park View
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE98 1ZZ

steve@bicknells.net

 

 

Are you ready for your first RTI year end? Reply

Close up of payslip

Basically you will need to:

  • Prepare P60’s (but no P14 and P35) by 31st May
  • Submit your final FPS or EPS
  • Update your Payroll Software for the New Tax Year

You can order your P60’s for free from HMRC http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/payerti/forms-updates/forms-publications/onlineorder.htm

Here is a great video from HMRC

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) plans to make its Basic PAYE Tools product for the 2014-15 tax year available on 3 April 2014.

The 2014-15 version of Basic PAYE Tools will be provided as an update to the existing version rather than a separate download, so existing users do not need to go to the HMRC website to get the update.

steve@bicknells.net

Do you think National Insurance should be merged with Income Tax? it could happen soon 9

Pay Packet And Banknotes

The Tax Payer’s Alliance have been  campaigning and it looks like the Chancellor, George Osborne, has agreed that the first step is to re-name National Insurance as “Earnings Tax”. The change is to be proposed in legislation this week.

This story was reported in the Telegraph on 23rd February. There is also an interesting article on Tax Research UK (Richard Murphy).

You pay National Insurance contributions to build up your entitlement to certain state benefits, including the State Pension.

You pay National Insurance if you’re:

  • 16 or over
  • an employee earning above £149 a week
  • self employed and making a profit over £7,755 a year (Class 4) plus £2.70 per week Class 2 NI (you may not have to pay any Class 2 NI if your profits are below £5,725)

If you’re employed, you stop paying Class 1 National Insurance when you reach the State Pension age.

If you’re self-employed you stop paying:

  • Class 2 National Insurance when you reach State Pension age (or up to 4 months after this to pay off any contributions you owe)
  • Class 4 National Insurance from the start of the tax year after the one in which you reach State Pension age

Income Tax is whole different ball game. Whilst I can see its simpler to have one tax the changes that would be required to achieve it would be huge!

Is it worthwhile?

steve@bicknells.net

 

 

 

Karren likes the Employment Allowance – £2000 will be very NIC(E) Reply

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This is what Karren Brady said…..

She has a point, £2,000 will be a big help to many SME’s.

The Employment Allowance is available from 6 April 2014. If you are eligible you can reduce your employer Class 1 NICs by up to £2,000 each tax year.

You can claim the Employment Allowance if you are a business or charity (including Community Amateur Sports Clubs) that pays employer Class 1 NICs on your employees’ or directors’ earnings.

If your company belongs to a group of companies or your charity is part of a charities structure, only one company or charity can claim the allowance. It is up to you to decide which company or charity will claim the allowance.

You can only claim the £2,000 Employment Allowance against one PAYE scheme – even if your business runs multiple schemes.

You cannot claim the Employment Allowance, for example if you:

  • employ someone for personal, household or domestic work, such as a nanny, au pair, chauffeur, gardener, care support worker
  • already claim the allowance through a connected company or charity
  • are a public authority, this includes; local, district, town and parish councils
  • carry out functions either wholly or mainly of a public nature (unless you have charitable status), for example:
    • NHS services
    • General Practitioner services
    • the managing of housing stock owned by or for a local council
    • providing a meals on wheels service for a local council
    • refuse collection for a local council
    • prison services
    • collecting debt for a government department

You do not carry out a function of a public nature, if you are:

  • providing security and cleaning services for a public building, such as government or local council offices
  • supplying IT services for a government department or local council

Personal and Managed Service Companies who pay contract fees instead of a wage or salary, may not be able to claim the Employment Allowance, as you cannot claim the allowance for any deemed payments of employment income.

Service companies can only claim the allowance, if you pay earnings and have an employer Class 1 NICs liability on these earnings.

You can use your own payroll software (see your software provider’s instructions), or HM Revenue and Customs’ (HMRC’s) Basic PAYE Tools to claim the Employment Allowance.

When you make your claim (using the software of your choice), you must reduce your employer Class 1 NICs payment by an amount of Employment Allowance equal to your employer Class 1 NICs due, but not more than £2,000 per year.

You can read the full guidance here

Will the Employment Allowance be NICE for your business?

steve@bicknells.net

From April what could I take in wages and still be below the thresholds? 3

Pay

On the 6th April 2014 the personal allowance will increase to £10,000 (up £560) which means you can earn £10,000 before you pay income tax.

But you might want to keep your earnings below the NI Threshold, in previous years the employers and employee’s NI thresholds have been out of alignment but from 6th April 2014 they will be aligned, which means that earnings over £153 per week (£7,956 per year) will attract both 12% employees’ NI and 13.8% employers’ NI. For earnings above £805 per week (£41,865 per year), the employees’ NI rate drops to 2% but the employers’ NI rate remains unchanged.

So to avoid Income Tax and NI you would need to earn below £7,956.

But, there is some good news, from April 2014 there is a new ’employment allowance’ of £2,000 which you can offset against your employers NI.

steve@bicknells.net

No more Class 1NI for Self Employed Entertainers Reply

Entertainer

Following 18 months of extensive engagement with representatives from all fields of the entertainment industry, HMRC published on 15 May 2013 a public consultation document: ‘National Insurance and Self-Employed Entertainers’, which discussed the precise difficulties being caused by the current application of the Regulations. The consultation presented four possible options for simplifying the NICs treatment of entertainers going forwards.

The consultation ran for 12 weeks receiving 11,814 individual responses of which 99.1% supported the option of repealing the Social Security (Categorisation of Earners) Regulations in relation to the entertainers. On 23 October 2013 HMRC published a summary of the consultation responses which included the announcement of the Government’s decision to repeal these Regulations insofar as they relate to entertainers from 6 April 2014 and a first draft of the legislation implementing this.

From 6 April 2014, producers engaging entertainment performance services will not be required to deduct Class 1 NICs contributions from any payments they make to you. This includes additional use payments such as royalties. The engager will make payments to the entertainer gross of tax and NICs and the entertainer must declare these earnings as part of their normal self-employed Self-Assessment return.

Please note that this guidance does not apply if you are an entertainer on an employment contract, and receive a regular salary from your engager with tax and NICs deducted at source under the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) system.

If you engage the services of entertainers

From 6 April 2014, you will not be required to operate Class 1 NICs for the entertainers you engage. If you are currently deducting employees’ Class 1 NICs from the payments you make to your entertainers (including additional use payments such as royalties), and paying the respective employers’ Class 1 NICs on these payments, you should continue to do so up until 5 April 2014. From 6 April 2014 however you should cease to do this.

The changes will be of interest to all national broadcasters, film companies, theatre managers, independent production companies, their representative bodies and agents in the Film & TV Production Industries, Equity, individual entertainers, companies engaging entertainers, and any other interested parties.

See HMRC Brief 35/13 for more details

steve@bicknells.net

Tax Free Childcare will the new rules be better or worse? 2

Mother and daughter with piggy bank

The Government wants to help working families and currently if you are an employee your employer can help with childcare and could for example buy childcare vouchers of up to £55 per week, the vouchers would be a tax free benefit to the employee. However, if you’re self employed you aren’t an employee so the rules don’t apply.

So recently there has been a consultation on what should be be done in the future.

The key proposals are:

  • New Scheme to go live in Autumn 2015
  • Working Families will open Voucher Accounts (self employed or employed)
  • As parents pay in the government tops up the account with 20p for every 80p paid in
  • Top up capped at £1,200
  • To be eligible all parent must work and not receive tax credits or be an additional rate tax payer

The chart below shows how it should work:

Childcare 2

 

steve@bicknells.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

National Insurance – As one NI holiday ends we look forward £2,000 in April 2014 Reply

Cash

Under the Regional Employers NICs Holiday scheme, new businesses could have qualified for a deduction of up to £5,000 from the employer NICs that would normally be due – for each of the first ten employees they take on.

The National Insurance contributions (NICs) holiday was available to new businesses that started up during the period from 22 June 2010 to 5 September 2013. So it has now ended.

But from April 2014 the good news is that every employer will save up to £2,000.

To take advance of the allowance, firms will simply have to inform HM Revenue & Customs, and the Treasury says it will be “delivered through standard payroll software”.

Up to 450,000 small businesses will no longer pay national insurance contributions from April 2014.

The allowance will cost almost £6bn over five years.

When George Osbourne announced it in the budget he said:

“For the person who’s set up their own business, and is thinking about taking on their first employee – a huge barrier will be removed. They can hire someone on £22,000, or four people on the minimum wage, and pay no jobs tax,”

So we look forward to claiming our £2,000 next year.

 

steve@bicknells.net