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Have you paid your Data Protection Fee?

14 Jan, 2021

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) is the independent regulatory office in charge of upholding information rights in the interest of the public. Under the Data Protection Act 2018, all organisations that process personal information must register with the ICO. 

By law, every organisation or sole trader who processes personal information needs to pay a data protection fee to the ICO, unless they benefit from a very limited exemption. There are currently more than half a million fee payers

VAT Reverse charge for construction sector

14 Jan, 2021

A further reminder that new VAT rules for building contractors and sub-contractors will come into effect from 1 March 2021. The new rules were originally expected to commence from 1 October 2019, but an initial 12 month delay was announced. The start date was then delayed for a further 5 months until 1 March 2021 due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

CJRS guidance on who can be furloughed

14 Jan, 2021

HMRC’s guidance on which employees can be placed on furlough using the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been updated. The scheme will continue until at least 30 April 2021. 

The updated guidance includes new information about employees who are unable to work because they have caring responsibilities resulting from coronavirus (COVID-19). This guidance confirms that employers may furlough employees with caring responsibilities arising from COVID-19 who are unable to work or are working reduced hours.

Rogue employers named and shamed for failing to pay minimum wage

14 Jan, 2021

139 employers, including some of the UK’s biggest household names, have been named and shamed in a government press release for failing to pay £6.7 million to over 95,000 workers in breach of the national minimum wage (NMW) legislation.

Apply for the new Global Health Insurance Card

12 Jan, 2021

UK residents can now apply for the new UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC).

Under Britain’s new agreement with the EU, UK residents’ rights to emergency and medically necessary healthcare will continue when travelling in the EU. This includes medically necessary treatment for a pre-existing or chronic condition.

Current European Health Insurance Cards (EHIC) are valid as long as they are in date and people can continue to use these when travelling to the EU.

Testing for international arrivals

12 Jan, 2021

Passengers arriving from all international destinations will be required to present a negative COVID-19 test result before departing for England to help protect against new strains of coronavirus circulating internationally.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has announced that inbound passengers arriving by boat, plane or train will have to take a test up to 72 hours before departing the country they are in, to help protect against the new strains of coronavirus such as those seen in Denmark and South Africa.

Did you file your tax return on Christmas Day?

07 Jan, 2021

A new press release by HMRC has highlighted that 2,700 taxpayers took the time to file their tax return online on Christmas Day with a further 8,500 taxpayers completing their tax returns on Boxing Day. In total, 31,400 Self-Assessment returns were filed between 24 and 26 December. Although this was a Christmas like no other, the number of submissions was actually slightly down on Christmas 2019. More than 11 million taxpayers are expected to complete a 2019-20 Self-Assessment tax return this year by 31 January 2021. 

Repaying furlough grants if overclaimed

07 Jan, 2021

Any business that has overclaimed a Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) grant must pay back the overpayment to HMRC. The rules outlined below for paying HMRC back an overclaim also applies to businesses that would like to make a voluntary repayment because they do not want or need the CJRS grant. The CJRS is currently due to continue until 30 April 2021.

No VAT on women’s sanitary products

07 Jan, 2021

The UK was unable to zero rate VAT on women’s sanitary products under EU rules and the items were subject to 5% VAT. Following the end of the transition period the UK is no longer bound by the EU VAT Directive which mandates a minimum 5% rate of VAT on all sanitary products.

Time to pay arrangements

07 Jan, 2021

One of the measures announced by HMRC at the start of the coronavirus pandemic was the introduction of emergency measures to help those affected by COVID-19 using the existing Time to Pay service. Businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities may be eligible to receive support with their tax affairs through this service.

Tax returns filing deadline at the end of this month

07 Jan, 2021

The 31 January 2021 tax return filing deadline is not just the final date for submission of your Self-Assessment tax return but also an important date for payment of tax due to HMRC. This includes the payment of any balance of Self-Assessment liability for the 2019-20 plus the first payment on account due for the current 2020-21 tax year. The 31 January 2021 is also the payment date for any CGT due on residential property sales made before the rules changed on 6 April 2020.

Income Tax charge to recover CJRS overclaims

07 Jan, 2021

Employers should notify HMRC if they have received a CJRS payment to which they are not entitled and pay back any amounts of CJRS grants claimed in error. By paying back any amounts they were not entitled to, employers can avoid any tax liability for overclaimed CJRS grants. Failure to do so within the stated notification period will be treated as deliberate and concealed conduct. This can result in penalties of up to 100% of the CJRS grant that the employer was not entitled to.

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