|MARTIN LEVIN & CO|
|Taxation Practitioners Accountants & Auditors||
Hours: 10am to 5pm Mon-Fri
0203 345 0192
|Previous Newsletters: 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 care-homes|
NEWSLETTER FOR WINTER 2009 [Website hits: 12,339 – last 12 months]
As predicted last year, we have had to live through a recession. As self-employed and small businesses it has proved to be a struggle. But we are pleased to observe that the clients of this practice have all, apparently, survived. Thankfully, the co-operation of earlier years has continued, and we are proud to have been of assistance to those clients who have passed us their books and records, as complete, and as prompt, after our usual letters requesting these. Those clients continue to be the backbone of the practice, and receive the “gold-star” treatment.
Legislation – means that Her Majesty’s Government twice a year announce its plans, which inevitably means in the words of so many lecturers that “the Government needs our money more than we do”. Regular attendances at courses and lectures, to keep abreast of the constantly changing tax and financial worlds, means that we, as advisors, have to be on our toes, to you, our clients, to protect you in the best way possible. For you, as clients, to benefit from this, delays in letting us have your input in good time, means that latecomers put themselves at a disadvantage. A comparison with other professional practices, has revealed that other practices have suffered by late information from clients, and become the victims of poorly trained clients who tend to abuse their professional advisors. That is one aspect that our practice will not permit. In 2009, extra “conditions” have been imposed by HM Government in record-keeping, as well as a stricter time-limit in presenting documentation. For years, clients of our practice have not found this to be a problem, as we issue free ABC Accounts Books for clients to keep their Accounting Records in order, as well as Document Checklists. As most clients utilise these properly, such “Laws” passed should not prove to be a problem. How these new “laws” will be policed and enforced remains a puzzle, as sadly, we do not seem to experience a sense of community any more, and the imposition of yet more “laws” only seems to serve those administering it.
Inheritance Tax changes that were proposed in the December 2008 Pre Budget Report (the spin-doctors hated the term “Mini Budget”) were reversed. Again, “we need your cash more than you do” syndrome. The problem with Long Term Care Homes still persists, and despite some newspapers taking this up some years ago, there is still a unanimous failure to address a positive solution from the three main parties. Careful tax planning is needed. Please feel free to contact us on this.
Royal Mail problems continue – sadly this is an annual point. Strikes in October 2009, and penny-pinching on under-stamped postage results in a Scrooge-like £1 surcharge. As a trip to the Sorting Office adds twenty minutes plus to a client’s time-sheet, is it not surprising that such incoming post is not collected, and so eventually gets sent back to the sender? Please do continue to write your names (and addresses) on the back of correspondence. While we appreciate that it is rarely practical to weigh outgoing post, and to check the enigma of the postal rates, we tend to over-stamp all outgoing post by a few coppers to attempt to avoid those infernal “red-cards” and penny-pinching surcharges.
Filing of tax returns – the date for paper returns passed on October 31. Our practice has filed “on-line” for the past three years, but if yours has not been filed, please look up the information requested of you in April, and let us have the information, in full, immediately. The filing date is 31 January 2010. There might always be a difficulty in December and January to complete clients’ tax return papers sent in those months, correctly and in full by the filing date, but we will always try to complete the tasks. Our fee structure might have to be re-considered to accommodate this, and so promptness is paramount. A huge thanks to the majority for whom this is never a problem.