How did it get so late so soon - deadline for self assessment tax returns looms

08 January 2015 •

With the self assessment tax filing deadline fast approaching on 31st January, Damian Talbot, head of taxation at Fulham based chartered tax advisors Warrener Stewart, shares some of the more amusing excuses people gave HMRC for not submitting their annual self assessment tax return before the due date.

As Damian points out all of these excuses were unsuccessful and the taxpayers would have incurred late filing penalties – claiming ‘my wife won’t give me my mail’ holds no sway with HMRC! 

With just three weeks to go until the filing deadline enlisting the help of Warrener Stewart to help you with your tax return is quick and easy, simply call 020 7731 6163 and ask for a member of our Tax Team.  In this case ‘better late than never’ can be an expensive option!

 

Two of Warrener Stewart’s directors make a difference to terminally ill children in South London

05 January 2015 •

Weeks of grueling cycling training for Fulham based accountants Nick Morgan and Jon Last of Warrener Stewart has meant that terminally ill children can have respite at one of two hospices run by Shooting Star Chase.

Nick and Jon signed up to raise money for the charity by taking part in the annual Prudential RideLondon Bike race; together they raised £3,500.

“We were really delighted when Nick Morgan and Jon Last chose to support Shooting Star Chase, by joining our team in the 2014 Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100,” commented Karen Peffer the Challenge Events Fundraiser for the charity. “They raised a fantastic £3,500.  This money will help us to provide essential care and support to families who have a baby, child or young person with a life-limiting condition.

The families we care for rely upon our support and this can be especially poignant at this time of year.  The money raised by Nick and Jon could cover the costs of two emergency stays at one of our hospices, in Hampton or Guildford.  These visits offer a lifeline to the families, often at a time when they are emotionally and physically exhausted.”

A new gain in the tax department at Warrener Stewart

19 December 2014 •

Merger with Tax specialist Whins Associates

The tax team at Warrener Stewart has enjoyed one of its busiest years of tax planning for corporate and private clients based in south west London. 

In order to strengthen its capacity in this area Warrener Stewart has acquired Whins Associates, a tax-specialist London accountancy practice established in 2011 by Francis Kershaw, based in Chelsea. 

“Efficient tax planning is all about building an ongoing relationship between your Chartered Tax Advisor and you the client,” notes Damian Talbot, director of tax at Warrener Stewart. “We have been busier than ever advising many owner managed businesses this year, which is why we are delighted that as a result of the merger, Francis has joined the team as a senior tax advisor.”

In the nine years since graduating from Warwick University with a degree in economics Francis has immersed himself in the world of taxation. He has worked for two of the Big Four accountancy firms, initially spending five years with PwC where he completed his training, before moving to KPMG. 

In 2012 Francis made the brave decision to leave the security of the corporate world to start his own accountancy business as he wanted to work with owner-managed clients taking a more hands on approach to advising them. For the past two years he has concentrated on building a profitable business working with several clients who will move with him to Warrener Stewart.

“Francis has the perfect background and thorough understanding of corporate and private tax that our clients need,” comments Damian. “He has a very forward looking approach and moreover appreciates first-hand the challenges owner managed businesses face. He will be helping a range of corporate and private clients maximise their value through efficient tax planning, while continuing to look after his original client base.”

Review of the 2014 Autumn Statement

04 December 2014 •

In his 2014 Autumn Statement the Chancellor announced a number of significant changes. Here is our initial reaction to these changes, as well as an overview of some of the key points that could affect you and your business.

Stamp Duty Land Tax

This was one of the key changes announced in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement and the changes are anticipated to deliver savings for up to 98% of the house purchasing public. Rather than a stepped method of calculating Stamp Duty Land Tax on acquisitions of residential property, from 4th December 2014, this will change as follows:

Property Value (£) Tax rate charged on part of property price within each tax band (%)
0 – 125,000 0
125,001 – 250,000 2
250,001 – 925,000 5
925,001 – 1,500,000 10
1,500,001+ 12

Broadly, the new calculation mechanism means a lower SDLT charge on values up to £937,500, but a higher charge for property purchase above this value.

Entrepreneur’s Relief Changes

Changes have been announced to the availability of Entrepreneur’s Relief on the incorporation of sole trader and partnership businesses into Limited companies.  From the 3rd December 2014 Entrepreneur’s Relief will no longer be available on the transfer of good will between these connected parties and no corporation tax deduction is available within the company for the amortisation of this acquired goodwill for the company.

ISA Transfers

The Chancellor announced that he will now allow for ISAs to be transferred to surviving spouses on death of an individual and retain the tax benefits of the ISA “wrapper”.

Pension Transfers

As previously announced the onerous 55% tax charge payable by pension schemes on transfer at death has been abolished. Now surviving family members can receive these pension funds free of tax.

Remittance Basis charge

A new rate for UK resident/non-domiciled individuals utilising the remittance basis has been announced. Individuals who have been a UK resident for more than 17 of the last 20 years will now incur a £90,000 remittance basis charge if they wish to utilise the remittance basis.

In addition, the £50,000 remittance basis charge which is incurred by UK resident/ non-domiciles who have been resident in the UK for more than 12 years has been increased to £60,000.

If you would like to talk to one of our tax team and explore what this Autumn Statement could mean for you and your business, please call 020 7731 6163

No responsibility for loss occasioned to any person acting on or refraining from action as a result of the material in this email can be accepted by us.

Fulham Boys School a new secondary school in Fulham officially opened

02 December 2014 •

Having been assisting the newly established Fulham Boys School as auditors and tax advisors for the last couple of years, Warrener Stewart was delighted to attend its official opening as a new secondary Free School in south west London on 21st November.

Nick Morgan, Ryan Lane and David Bayman joined with local dignitaries including The Rt Hon Greg Hands MP and the Rt Revd Paul Williams, Bishop of Kensington to celebrate the opening of London’s first secondary Free School for boys. In recognition of the school’s hard work and the Government’s commitment to the development of more Free Schools Nick Gibb, Minister of State at the Department for Education also attended the official opening.

Local parents have worked tirelessly with FBS governors and staff over the past five years to access government funding to start a Free School.  Warrener Stewart were delighted to have been appointed as the school’s auditors from the outset and during recent years to have worked alongside the governors to ensure the school could open to their first Year 7 intake in September 2014.

Warrener Stewart’s director, Nick Morgan who is the Firm’s principal contact with FBS commented; “This school is great news for Fulham and the surrounding area and promises to deliver great things in the future. It’s the culmination of 5 years hard and thankless work by the original founders and others who have joined them along the way. We look forward to being a small part of the evolving success.”
 

A landlords guide to tax liabilities

13 November 2014 •

Navigating the rental market as a landlord can often be confusing. While there are many rewarding aspects to being an investor, there are also tax obligations to bear in mind.

Writing in this month's KFH's London Property Market Blog, our tax expert Ryan Lane outlines some allowable expenses landlords can enter on their annual tax return.

If you are planning on letting a property in the UK, your rental income profits will be subject to income tax. This is fairly standard, however there are still many who don’t fully understand what this entails and what implications you may face should you not adhere to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) procedures. In order to avoid any penalties, a self-assessment tax return must be submitted annually to HMRC. Your profits will then be subject to tax at a rate of 20%, 40% or 45%, depending on your total income in that tax year.

There are ways in which you can mitigate some of your tax liabilities. One way is to ensure that you have deducted all the allowable expenses from your total rental income as you would only be taxed on your net rent. The list of allowable expenses is comprehensive and includes contents insurance, lettings agent’s fees, maintenance and repairs to the property and the cost of services. According to the Landlord’s Energy Saving Allowance, you could also reduce your tax bill by up to £1,500 by installing energy saving products. If you’re a landlord with multiple properties, employing an accountant may be beneficial to ensure you are making the most effective use of your tax allowances.

HMRC has strict procedures in place. These include timelines on notifying HMRC of new sources of income and deadlines on filing tax returns. Failure to comply could lead to tough financial penalties for you. For example, failing to notify HMRC of taxable rental income could result in a fine of up to £3,000. HMRC is aware of a large tax shortfall from landlords failing to register their property business. To address this problem, it has introduced the Let Property Campaign. For landlords who have failed to declare their correct rental income, the Let Property Campaign provides the opportunity to get their tax affairs in order. Reporting undisclosed income now, will mean exposure to penalties will be limited from 100% of the tax due, to a maximum of 20%.

If you have any questions about tax requirements for landlords please contact one of the Warrener Stewart tax team at our Fulham offices.

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“Warrener Stewart understands our business; they give us more than any other Accountancy service we have ever received in the past. They are extremely commercially aware and very current when it comes to changes in tax policy. ”
Diana Hoare - Anderson Hoare