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Here are just some of the strategies our tax experts are sharing with you this month: 
  • Making Gifts And Legacies: Love Letters

    The reason why an individual (e.g. a family member) makes a gift to another is ultimately a matter of fact.  However, it will often be necessary to provide evidence in support of the reason for the gift because the tax treatment might depend on it. Mark McLaughlin highlights a selection of circumstances in which letters from individuals making gifts or legacies might be useful...
  • Making Tax Digital Is On Its Way - Ready Or Not?

    Although there is widespread agreement that the government’s Making Tax Digital for Business (MTD) project is the right approach for the future, many concerns have been raised over recent months regarding the pace and scale of changes. Sarah Laing looks at some of the issues businesses will be facing as they prepare to report digitally for VAT from April 2019...
  • Recovering VAT On Assets With Both Business And Private Use

    What happens when goods have both business and private/non-business use? Andrew Needham looks at methods of recovering and accounting for VAT on assets with both business and private use...
  • Getting To Grips With The New Dividend Tax Regime For Discretionary Trusts (Part 2)

    In the second of his two-part article, Peter Rayney reviews the tax treatment of distributions made to beneficiaries of a discretionary trust...
  • Maximising Residence Nil Rate Band Relief

    Most people will perhaps recall the Conservatives announcing that no-one dying with an estate of up to £1 million will pay inheritance tax (IHT) in future. Well, as so often with politicians, the announcement was only a half-truth. Malcolm Finney warns how easy it can be to lose part of the inheritance tax residence nil rate band...
  • Using Pension Contributions To Reduce The High Income Child Benefit Charge

    The high-income child benefit charge (HICBC) has been a feature of the income tax regime since 7 January 2013. It was introduced following the uproar caused by the plan announced in October 2010 to abolish child benefit for any household with a 40% taxpayer. Lindsey Wicks considers how those caught by the high-income child benefit charge could achieve low-cost pension saving...
  • Ticking Time Bombs And Employment-Related Securities

    As some readers will know, the employment-related securities (ERS) legislation (ITEPA 2003, Pt 7) is very complex. It is also fundamentally flawed in various ways, and it is quite easy to fall into traps which are rather like ticking time bombs, ready to explode when it’s too late to defuse them.  Ken Moody unearths some, perhaps unconsidered but not trifling, issues readers should be aware of...
  • All Change! NICs And Landlords

    Whether or not a landlord is currently liable to pay Class 2 National Insurance Contributions (NICs) depends on whether the landlord falls within the definition of a ‘self-employed earner’ for NIC purposes, and if so, whether profits are in excess of the existing small profits threshold (£6,025 for 2017/18). Sarah Laing runs through forthcoming changes to National Insurance contributions, and in particular how they may affect landlords...
  • HMRC Thrash Rangers In Epic ‘EBT’ Final!

    The Glasgow Rangers employee benefit trust (EBT) case (RFC 2012 Plc (in liquidation) (formerly The Rangers Football Club Plc) v Advocate General for Scotland [2017] UKSC 45) must go down as the defining tax avoidance case of the current decade. Peter Rayney explains why the game is finally up for ‘employee benefit trust’ arrangements...
  • Director Loan Accounts And Partner Capital Accounts – Are They Inheritance Taxable?

  • Almost every business owner will have invested money into their own business. Some will do it by buying shares in a limited company; others by lending the company money, which is reflected in their director’s loan account (DLA).

    Tony Granger critically examines whether it is worth business owners leaving their money in the business.
  • Tax Planning Nobody Will Rush to Try

    Tax is a consideration both during lifetime and on death. It is therefore prudent to consider steps to mitigate tax in respect of each. Mark McLaughlin looks at the tax planning on gifts between spouses or civil partners that might help some couples at a time they would probably prefer not to think about.
  • Reform Of Landlords’ Taxation: Where Are We Now?

    Although proposals to allow landlords to use the cash basis for calculating taxable profits were confirmed in the 2017 Spring Budget on 8 March 2017, we are still waiting for the legislation has yet to receive Royal Assent. Sarah Laing looks at proposals to reform the tax system for landlords.
  • VAT Rules On Transfers Of A Going Concern: A Trap To Avoid

    When you buy the trade and assets of a business, it can be treated as the ‘transfer of a going concern’ (TOGC) and no VAT need be charged. Andrew Needham looks at the small print of the 'Transfer of a going concern' VAT rules so that you can avoid falling into a trap.
  • Getting To Grips With The New Dividend Tax Regime For Discretionary Trusts

    With many trustees starting to deal with ‘their’ trust tax returns for 2016/17, this is perhaps an opportune time to examine the impact of the new dividend tax regime on discretionary trusts.  In the first of a two-part article, Peter Rayney looks at the taxation of dividends received by discretionary trusts. 
  • A ‘Will’ Only Speaks From Death!

    We all know that in an ideal world we should each make a will so that following our death everything will be in order…or will it? Malcolm Finney considers whether the statement ‘a will only speaks from death’ is literally true.
  • Tax Measures That Could Already Apply, But Are Not Law Yet…

    The snap general election led to many of the measures in the Finance Bill introduced on 20 March 2017 being dropped ahead of the dissolution of Parliament.  Lindsey Wicks looks at personal tax measures that apply from the start of the 2017/18 tax year or another date before the introduction of the Autumn Finance Bill...
  • How’s The Family? Penalties And Reasonable Excuse

    Every year, numerous appeals by taxpayers against penalties from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for the late submission of tax returns reach the First-tier Tribunal. Mark McLaughlin wonders if HMRC properly considers whether penalties are appropriate when taxpayers file their tax returns late due to serious illness...

  • Don’t Waste Sole Trader Trading Losses

    No sole trader deliberately sets out to make trading losses but, typically, for many, they are almost inevitable, particularly in the early years of trading. Malcolm Finney explains how to maximise cash flow by efficient trading loss usage...
  • How To Reduce Irrecoverable VAT For Partly Exempt Businesses

    A business that makes a mixture of taxable and exempt supplies is known as ‘partially exempt’. Businesses that make exempt supplies are not entitled to recover the VAT on costs associated with making the exempt supplies, and so cannot recover all of the VAT that they incur. Andrew Needham looks at ways in which partly exempt businesses can improve their VAT position...
  • A Fond Farewell? Funding Business Exits

    Business exits can be planned or unplanned. The two main types of business under consideration are limited companies and partnerships, including LLPs. The planned successful exit will consider several factors. Tony Granger outlines some different routes to a successful business exit and how to fund it...
  • Private Residence Relief: Beware The Restrictions

  • In William & Anor v Revenue and Customs [2017] UKFTT 449 (TC), Mr and Mrs Ritchie did not have their house on the market, but they received a windfall when property developers knocked on their door one evening and offered them £2 million for their house and grounds. Lindsey Wicks examines a recent First-tier Tribunal decision in which private residence relief was restricted...
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