Tax Investigations Update

HMRC collected an additional £26.6bn from compliance in 2014/15, and has been given an additional £800m to pursue non-compliance and tax evasion. Please click to download the latest Tax-Investigations-Update-Sept-2015.pdf (290 downloads)  which highlights the increased risk posed by current HMRC activity and tactics. If you are not currently insured with us then do contact us

Are you paying enough?

From the 1st October 2015 the new National Minimum Wages (NMW) will come into force

Year 21 and over 18 to 20 Under 18 Apprentice
2015 (from 1 October) £6.70 £5.30 £3.87 £3.30
2014 (current rate) £6.50 £5.13 £3.79 £2.73

 

With a further increase in April 2016 for over 25’s to £7.20 per hour. The April 2016 wage will be called the Living Wage.

Penalties for non compliance are already harsh and as reported by the BBC on 1st September 2015 they are getting tougher…

These include doubling penalties for non-payment and disqualifying employers from being a company director for up to 15 years.

The government also announced plans to double the enforcement budget for non-payment and to set up a new team in HMRC to pursue criminal prosecutions for employers who deliberately do not pay workers the wage they are due.

Penalties for non-payment will be doubled, from 100% of arrears owed to 200%, although these will be halved if paid within 14 days. The maximum penalty will remain £20,000 per worker.

​Are you paying enough?

Dividend tax following the Summer 2015 Budget

One of the major announcements in the Summer Budget, affecting owner managed businesses was the proposed changes to dividend taxation.  Very little was announced on Budget Day but the Government have now published a factsheet providing further details on the Dividend Allowance which also provides examples of how the new tax allowance will work when it comes into force on April 2016.

 

To recap:

From April 2016 the dividend tax credit will be abolished and a new dividend tax allowance of £5,000 a year will be introduced. Dividends received up to £5,000 will be covered by the new Dividend Allowance and will be tax free, but dividends exceeding this amount will be taxed at the following rates:

 

  • 7.5% on dividend income within the basic rate
  • 32.5% on dividend income within the higher rate band
  • 38.1% on dividend income within the additional rate band

 

The Dividend Allowance factsheet gives 6 useful examples demonstrating how individuals could be affected.  Click here for a copy of HMRC’s Dividend Allowance Factsheet

 

Although the Governments headlines say “this simpler system will mean only those with significant dividend income will pay more tax”, we believe that in most cases where business owners extract profit by way of dividends, the new rules will lead to an increase in their tax liability.

 

With a split of income of £8,000 (to trigger basic national insurance) and £40,000 dividends received you will be £1,450 worse off in 2015/16.  A salary of £8,000 with £50,000 dividends will result in £2,200 additional tax.

 

Recipients of dividends who were previously did not have a tax liability will now have to pay tax if they are in receipt of dividends in excess of £5,000 and they will need to register with HMRC and complete a self assessment tax return to report this.

 

It is important therefore to plan for these changes in the current tax year.  It may be worth paying additional dividends in 2015/16, assuming there are sufficient distributable reserves, even if this accelerates the payment of income tax for those liable at the higher or additional rate of tax.

 

Call Liric now to find out how the new rules will affect you – 01763 853633.