MARTIN LEVIN & CO
Taxation Practitioners - Accountants & Auditors
Gordon Avenue - Highams Park - London E4 9QU
Telephone (Skype): Martin.Levin1066
Web Site www.MartinLevinABC.co.uk
NEWSLETTER FOR AUTUMN 2021
Conclusion of Newsletters Although these have been issued annually for quite some time, it is considered that under the digital age, that most people realise that news changes so frequently, that paper letters are quickly superseded. Indeed our Facebook page M Levin & Co is updated almost daily. Your attention was drawn to this in the Autumn 2020 Newsletter, but for what it’s worth, it is reproduced again.
Facebook - we have a page: M Levin & Co. Would you be so kind as to visit it and perhaps pass some comment, please? https://www.facebook.com/M-Levin-Co-393175484388729
With so many changes and announcements, it is a way to daily update tax news.
Problems with Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) continue to abound. Whereas their digital pages mainly do work well; sadly, when there are problems (as has been the case over the past year or so), attempts to try to get them to address the problems encountered, have been tediously slow. That absorbed our time, and their reluctance to compensate us for our time in sorting out their problems does not sit well with us.
Tax Return season for us, once again, with grateful thanks to most of you that have co-operated with our requests for information sent out on 15 April 2021, in providing us with the documentation, etc. This enabled early filing to be achieved, and your 31 July 2021 and 31 January 2022 tax liabilities are confirmed. You can relax. Tax Return data received after our cut-off date (30 September) have predictably proved more time-consuming, and so have incurred higher fees. Once again (as in previous Newsletters), we were beset by the problems of not being provided with the requested specific documents, principally:
Bank Interest Received – we asked for certificates, and
Pension Payments made - we asked for certificates, and advised clients to reject any other paperwork that the pension companies might (still) send out.
Should Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) ask for evidence that is why we insist on seeing a third-party certificate. If it goes wrong, HMRC has a phrase “careless” in preparing a tax return; and that carries a penalty. We don’t want our clients to have to suffer this ignominy, as that is what you pay us for: to keep you and the taxman as strangers for as long as possible.
Coronavirus/Covid-19- much has been aired in respect of this. You don’t need to be reminded of the frustration of hearing this excuse being given out when we ask “what’s happening to our claim, request, etc”. One instance over the past year or so that we experienced was in obtaining a Grant of Probate. HMRC Website was showing that the expected wait time would be “4 to 8 WEEKS”. For us, it was just under 8 MONTHS.
When preparing self-assessment tax returns for Self-Employed clients, it was revealed that the misnomer “Grant” was taxable. We were brought up to know that a grant was not (usually) taxable, as it was equivalent to a “gift”. How badly this phrase has gone down in our profession, and readers of ordinary English. That seems to have signposted the way that prevails in our current society. One has to accept that a next generation of workers have taken their place in our community, and their standards are different to ours. However, we are still here for YOU, and are keeping up to date with the “plethora” of tax changes, etc, means that we still pride ourselves in providing personal and professional services to our clients.
Future further digitalisation
Making Tax Digital (MTD)
Citing the pandemic as a reason, the government announced in September 2021 that this part of the MTD initiative was to be delayed by 12 months until April 2024. This applies to self-employed businesses and landlords. There is a further 12-month delay for partnerships until April 2025. There are many other announcements regarding other taxes, that to advise you at this time, seems pointless. Please keep an eye on our Facebook page M Levin &Co where updates and more precise information is aired. In essence, Her Majesty’s Government/Treasury is forcing us all to “go digital” whether we can cope or not.
Software tested: Again, we were not convinced about any ideal software. However, the facilities offered by NatWest Bank in buying out FreeAgent and allowing users to use it free, plus the fact that all software houses are constantly evolving, is worthy of note. The cost to outsiders might even be more economical to customers of other banks. We are always on hand to assist clients with short-term problems with their book-keeping, but for some clients, the use of an experienced book-keeper (even in the short-term) is advised.
HMRC’s Personal Tax Account if you still haven’t signed up for this the online link is: https://www.gov.uk/personal-tax-account
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