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HMRC encourage businesses to register for the Trader Support Service

The Government is urging businesses to sign up to the Trader Support Service (TSS) before the end of the Brexit transition period.

The new service provides a free-to-use digital platform to help businesses and traders of all sizes navigate the upcoming changes to the way goods moved under the Northern Ireland Protocol from 1 January 2021.

The service launched at the end of September and by the middle of November more than 7,000 businesses had signed up. HMRC are however, encouraging more businesses to follow suit.

The TSS contact centre, which…

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Finance Bill 2021 and other changes

Although there is no official Budget statement this Autumn, HMRC have published details of a series of measures affecting tax. Some of the changes will take place straight away or from April 2021, others are to be consulted on and included in draft Finance Bill 2021. The key announcements are summarised in the following paragraphs.

Capital allowances AIA extended

The Government has announced that it is extending the current temporary level of the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA) of £1,000,000 by one year covering 1 January to 31 December 2021.

This extension…

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GUIDANCE FOR OUR CLIENTS – CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) – CJRS/Furlough Extension – 3nd November 2020

After the Prime Minister’s surprise announcement late Saturday afternoon we wanted to share the limited information we have regarding The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme extension (also known as ‘furlough’) with clients.

The below only provides guidance on the Job Retention Scheme Extension, we strongly advise clients to seek employment/HR advice prior to placing any employee(s) on furlough or extending an employee’s furlough.

Key Points:
The extension will last until December 2020.
The scheme will be based on the August 2020 rules, this means employers can claim 80% of their employees normal wages…

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HMRC review of import VAT deducted as input tax by non-owners

HMRC have recently clarified the correct treatment for the deduction of import VAT paid by a taxable person who is not the owner of the relevant goods.

Following the publication on HMRC Brief 2 (2019), which restated the long-standing policy of who is entitled to reclaim VAT paid on imports under current UK legislation, HMRC received a number of representations from businesses and business representatives about the application of the rules in specific cases. HMRC’s have now completed their review and have confirmed that the policy outlined Brief 2…

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The ‘new normal’ for Christmas parties?

As we approach the end of the year, thoughts may be turning towards upcoming Christmas celebrations and alike – although this year, the traditional work’s Christmas party is likely to look very different.

Whilst the tax legislation does not include a specific allowance for an employer providing a Christmas party for employees, HMRC do allow limited tax relief against the cost providing social functions. Relief will still be available even where such an event is being held in a different format due to the coronavirus restrictions – possibly even…

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Covid-19: SEISS and business grants update

Millions of self-employed individuals have been eligible to receive direct cash grants through the government’s Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), to help them during the coronavirus outbreak.

There are four opportunities to receive a grant under the SEISS, although the deadlines for the first two parts have now passed.

For parts three and four, the government says it will provide two taxable grants to support those experiencing reduced demand due to Covid-19 but are continuing to trade, or temporarily cannot trade. Payments will be available to anyone who was previously…

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Covid-19: Job Support Scheme

The Chancellor originally announced details of the new Job Support Scheme (JSS) in his Winter Economy Plan, but the details have since been updated in a statement on 22 October 2020.

The JSS is the main employment support scheme from 1 November 2020, following the cessation of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). The scheme will run for six months, until April 2021.

There is no need for the employee to have been previously furloughed before 1 November 2020, or for the employer to have claimed under the CJRS.

The primary…

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GUIDANCE FOR OUR CLIENTS – CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) – Firebreak/lockdown grants – 27th October 2020

Business Wales have today released further details on the firebreak and lockdown grants. These grants will be open to applications from tomorrow (28th October 2020). Availability is on a first come, first served basis so we recommend clients act quickly to secure any grants they are eligible for.
Lockdown Non-Domestic Rate Grants

Grant 1

A grant of £5,000 is being made available for retail, leisure and hospitality businesses that have been forced to close (as defined by the regulations) and occupy properties with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000….

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VAT: changes to accounting methods used by opticians and sellers of hearing aids

HMRC have published Brief 14 (2020), which covers changes to the methods used by opticians and sellers of hearing aids to account for VAT on their supplies. The changes take effect from 1 October 2020.

Broadly, opticians that dispense spectacles or contact lenses to their customers are treated as making two supplies for VAT purposes – the spectacles or lenses themselves, which are taxable at the standard rate, and a supply of dispensing services, which is exempt from VAT. Similarly, dispensers of hearing aids make a taxable supply of…

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Can I get a Customs grant?

Businesses need to prepare ahead of new Customs procedures coming into play in 2021 when the Brexit transition period ends. The Government has made funding available in the form of a grant to help businesses get ready.

Who can apply?

To qualify for a grant a business must:

– have been established in the UK for at least 12 months before the submission of the application and when the grant is paid; and
– not have previously failed to meet its tax obligations.

In addition, the businesses must meet one of the following…

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