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Small Business Guides on Tax and Business Accounts

A selection of our most popular tax guides, focusing primarily on limited companies:

  • Limited Company Tax Basics
  • Tax rate and allowances 2019/20
  • National Insurance
  • PAYE
  • Home Office Expenses
  • Dividends
  • Expenses
  • In this article, we look at the services most accountancy firms can offer to small businesses – with particular reference to limited companies.
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    You’ll be aware that HMRC is bringing in new, stricter rules around using contractors and consultants, known as IR35 effective April 2020.  These new rules are intended to stop contractors, freelancers and consultants being used as “disguised employees” to avoid paying tax and benefits.

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    If your contracts are caught by the IR35 rules, the financial impact will be considerable. Here, we look at the tax difference you will incur if you are inside or outside IR35.
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    If you are a limited company director, you are liable to pay both employers’ and employees’ National Insurance Contributions on any salaries you pay above the current threshold.
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    When starting a small business, one of the first things to be decided is the legal structure used for the business. It can either be a sole trader or limited company or a partnership. Setting up as a sole trader is the most popular legal structure in the UK, with approximately 3.5 million sole proprietorships in 2019. Sole traders accounted for 60% of small businesses in the UK. There were also 1.9 million limited companies, making it the second most popular legal structure.

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    In this article, we give you an overview of the basics of limited company tax as written by the senior accountant from Dolan Accountancy. This includes the various taxes you will be liable to pay (or collect) as a limited company, and when you have to pay them.

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    When your company turnover reaches the ‘VAT threshold’ (currently £85,000) in a twelve-month period, you must register for limited company VAT. Even if you don’t, there may be professional reasons why you would want to register anyway. So, how does the VAT registration for limited companies work?

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    Salary aside, most limited company directors (and shareholders) typically draw down most of their income in the form of dividends. Dividends are distributed by companies of all types in order to return a proportion of company profits back to their shareholders. Here we look at what are company dividends and how to calculate them.
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    If you have started a business or are thinking about starting one, then you will need to decide on a business structure. You can choose to create a limited company, work as a sole trader or a partnership. Each business structure varies, especially when it comes to accounts and the bookkeeping. Sole trader owners are classed as self-employed, therefore they have their own set of tax rules and regulations to adhere to.

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    It’s important to be aware of all the 2020 tax dates and deadlines, especially those that will affect your small business. Some of the tax deadlines such as the self-assessment and VAT tax return take a considerable amount of preparation and time beforehand. So make sure you take note of all the dates that are relevant to you and your small business in order to get prepared.
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    There are a number of ways in which you can set up and run your business in the UK. In this guide created by OrangeGenie, we look at the differences between sole trader, partnership, Ltd and PLC. We will focus on explaining what the type of company is, the tax implications, and the advantages and disadvantages of each.
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    Whether you are self-employed or are running a business on the side, you will have a personal tax account which you should be checking. However, research finds that nearly half of UK workers don’t check their account.

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    When operating on a self-employed basis as a sole trader, you are your own boss, which means that you’re legally responsible for the financial affairs of your business, including the maintenance of financial records, daily bookkeeping and retaining the likes of invoices and receipts. As you keep close watch of your income and expenditure to ensure that the business is running smoothly, there are reporting obligations you are required to meet, writes Mark Halstead of Red Flag Alert.

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    The tax on dividends is paid at a set rate that is set by the HMRC. Every new tax year, as with other taxes, the rates change. The biggest change in the last couple of years is the tax-free dividend allowance being reduced from £5,000 to £2,000.

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    We all want to keep our businesses taxes as low as possible and one way is to claim all legitimate expenses.  But the general rule that says you can claim all expenses incurred wholly and exclusively for the purpose of your business is, sadly, not entirely straight forward.

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    The tax season for 2019 in the UK is officially defined as the period between 6 April 2018 and 5 April 2019. Each tax season, all businesses, regardless of size, must provide their employees, contract workers, and others, with tax documentation that is required by the HMRC so that workers can file their tax returns. Unless an extension is requested, all tax paperwork must be postmarked or filed with HMRC by no later than 31 January 2020.

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    If you are thinking about getting private healthcare insurance for yourself and your family, you can pay for it in two ways. You can either pay for your private healthcare insurance through your limited company or do it from your personal accounts. Depending on various factors, the tax efficiency of both methods will vary. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to get an opinion of an accountant to help you find the best option.

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    Readers question: How do I pay myself as an employee of my limited company?

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    If you are classed as self-employed or have a source of untaxed income, you will be required to complete a Self-Assessment. However, this criteria is vague and many are left confused as to whether they actually need to file the tax return or not.

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    While having fun may not be a mandatory prerequisite for succeeding in the business world, if you have fun performing vital tasks, you stand to receive a number of benefits. First of all, you’re bound to pay more attention to what you’re doing (instead of just dozing off in boredom), thus reducing the likelihood of a mistake being made. Second, you’re less likely to procrastinate and postpone handling this task, which means that you’re more likely to handle your tasks in time and regularly update them. Finally, if you like what you’re doing, you’ll learn a lot quicker, seeing as how you’ll already have a strong intrinsic motivation for such a thing.

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