Charity Tax Reform – a blunderbuss when a sniper is needed?

Chris Yeates

Following isolated but significant cases of tax abuse involving charities, the Government is under pressure to prevent this happening again and their solution is to reinforce the definition of a charity for tax avoidance purposes. An HMRC consultation proposes tightening the definition so that a charity cannot receive tax reliefs if it has been established “to secure a tax advantage”.

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Incorporation: Is this structure right for you?

Tessa Brown

With more solicitors practices than ever converting to a Limited Company is it time to consider which structure is right for you?

There are many points to take into account when considering which structure is correct for your business, and how it affects the tax position of the individual partners.

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Team Larking Gowen to take on the East Anglian Team Challenge to raise money for local charities

Team Larking Gowen

On Friday 13 June, Luke Morris, Steven Rudd, Lisa Daniels and Chris Vines from Larking Gowen (‘Team Larking Gowen’), will be setting off to the beautiful Lake District to represent the firm at the Barclay’s East Anglian Team Challenge.

So what is the Team Challenge? It is a gruelling 26 kilometre walk, aiming to scale 10 summits over 14 hours with a total height climbed of 2,500 metres (eight times the height of the Eiffel Tower) around the Lake District including climbing Scafell Pike which is the largest mountain in England.

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Late Tax Returns – a penalty shootout

Michael Morter

Time flies quickly and for many the 31 January 2014 will already seem a long time ago.  For those who have to prepare a self assessment tax return it was the deadline for submitting your 2012/13 tax return online.

As you would expect the vast majority of taxpayers completed their return on time – but what about the minority who are still yet to do so?

They will already have received a fixed £100 penalty and where the return is three months late a further penalty of £10 per day comes into play; lasting for a maximum of 90 days – that’s £900!  This daily penalty starts from 1 May i.

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Public Money now Available for Domestic Heat Installations

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) was first proposed in 2010, the idea being that householders and businesses (particularly rural ones and those off the main grid) relying on expensive oil or gas for heating needed some persuasion to switch to renewable energy alternatives. The first scheme (in the world, inevitably!), offers financial incentives for us to install low-carbon heating systems; and is part of the Government’s ongoing effort to influence our choices in this area and an effort to compensate the market for the difference in price between renewable and fossil fuel systems.

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IoD Suffolk Question Time: The Chairman’s View

A couple of weeks ago we entertained some of the region’s MEPs and prospective MEPs for an: EU… are we in or out Question Time-style debate. It just so happened that this coincided with the first Farage v. Clegg dust up so, we had a very topical event on our hands. I felt it went well, if a little political (duh—what was I expecting?) and overly academic or philosophical at times.

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Trusts and Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act – shock and awe

Recent years have seen a raft of agreements between the UK and other countries which involve the sharing of information. Many in the UK were affected by the UK and Switzerland agreement in 2011 which enables HMRC to receive information about bank accounts held in Switzerland by UK taxpayers.

The USA has taken a similar approach by introducing the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act provisions (better known as FATCA).

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VAT Compound Interest Bonanza?


Last week the High Court ruled decisively in favour of the Barclays twins-owned Littlewoods group in a case that could have significant, if not cataclysmic consequences for the UK VAT coffers. Fortunately the basic issue is simple – should HMRC be liable to pay simple interest or compound interest when they make a mistake and a taxpayer is refunded the tax overpaid? Not surprisingly, HMRC believe the former applies! However, if Littlewoods is ultimately successful, HMRC could have literally billions of pounds of claims on its doorstep as just the Littlewoods claim for interest is for £1.

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