Charities against fraud: new web site launch

Bevan & Buckland AccountantsCharities against fraud: new web site launch

The Charity Commission, in collaboration with members of the Charity Sector Counter Fraud Group, has today launched www.charitiesagainstfraud.org.uk, a new website dedicated to helping charities in the fight against fraud. It provides an initial point of reference for trustees, staff and volunteers who want to find out more about tackling fraud in their charity, and includes guidance, top tips, case studies, as well as signposting users to other organisations tackling charity fraud.

The launch of the new website marks the start of Charity Fraud Awareness Week (24-28 October). According to the National Crime Agency, ‘individuals, the private sector and the charity sector lose billions of pounds each year to fraud’. The campaign – led by the Commission and the Fraud Advisory Panel – will be reminding charities how to limit their fraud risk. It aims to ensure that trustees and charity staff can recognise the warning signs of fraud and shape an effective and proportionate response.

Top tips to reduce your charity’s vulnerability to fraud include:

1.    Develop a strong counter fraud culture where staff are encouraged to play their part in the fight against fraud.

2.    Have in place and robustly apply internal financial controls.

3.    Encourage staff to voice concerns.

4.    Have a fraud response plan so that everyone knows what to do and when – stay calm but act quickly when incidents do occur.

5.    Ensure you report incidents to Action Fraud and to the Commission, via the dedicated reporting facility: RSI@charitycommission.gsi.gov.uk.

David Kirk, Chairman of the Fraud Advisory Panel, commented:
Fraud presents a serious threat to every organisation but unfortunately charities can be particularly vulnerable due to the high number of financial transactions they undertake. Fraud can manifest itself in many different forms and is constantly evolving – which is why we are urging everyone working with charities and not-for-profit organisations to join together and stop fraud against charities. Charity staff and trustees must stay alert to the risks and understand how to manage them.

Diana Isiye, Head of Counter Fraud at Oxfam GB said:
We know that charities can fall victim to fraud. Working together to encourage trustees and staff to start a conversation about fraud and share their experiences is a crucial way to ensure the sector is better equipped to meet the growing challenge posed by fraud.

Michelle Russell, Director of Investigations Monitoring and Enforcement at the Charity Commission added:
Fraud can thrive in an environment of weak governance and poor financial management, so we are reminding charity staff and trustees, as part of Charity Fraud Awareness Week, to seek out the good practice guidance that is widely available and to review their charity’s financial controls and procedures. We’re keen to work closely with charities to improve their fraud resilience and hope that the new site will enable charities to access and learn from the best practice that’s already out there.

Charity Fraud Awareness Week will conclude with the second National Charity Fraud Conference in London on 28 October, which will include panel discussions and presentations from Michelle Russell and Commission board member, Mike Ashley. Two regional events will follow in December and January for those not able to attend Friday’s conference. The Fraud Advisory Panel and the Commission will also be producing a conference report, summarising issues and conclusions and reminding trustees to maintain a counter-fraud focus.

If you’d like to get involved and help spread the word, a supporter’s pack is available and you can follow #CharityFraud on Twitter for live updates.

R & D Tax Relief explained

Bevan & Buckland AccountantsResearch & Development Tax Relief – Encouraging Innovation through the Tax System

For over sixteen years companies have been able to derive significant cash benefits from the Government’s Research & Development (“R&D”) tax regime.

Below leading R&D Tax Specialist, Paul Arnold (Tax Partner at Bevan & Buckland), answers many of the key initial questions companies frequently ask regarding this regime:

1.            What is the R&D tax regime all about?

The R&D tax regime provides companies with actual cash benefits which are directly linked to the level of qualifying expenditure incurred.

For example, SMEs may now derive an additional cash benefit equivalent to £26k per £100k of spend; or if they are loss making they may receive an actual cash receipt from HMRC of up to £33.35k per £100k of spend.

The cash benefit for companies claiming under the large company scheme is £8.8k in both scenarios i.e. since April 2013 companies without a corporation tax liability may now receive actual cash from the Government.

Companies have two years from the end of their accounting period to make, or amend, an R&D claim so there is often scope for companies to derive significant immediate cash benefits.

2.            How is R&D defined?

For this purpose we need to consider the tax definition, which is often more far reaching than many people perceive.

R&D can generally be thought of as work undertaken to develop new, or improved, products or processes.  For example, developing an automated process, or one that is quicker, more efficient or creates less waste etc. may potentially qualify.

3.            What expenditure qualifies for this enhanced relief?

There are a range of qualifying categories of expense, including staffing costs, contracted out activities, EPWs (for instance, agency workers), consumables, computer software, utilities and payments to the subjects of clinical trials.

However, knowing that staffing costs qualify is the easy part.  The complexity in preparing a claim involves, for example, identifying all employees involved within the R&D process and establishing the correct proportion of time they were engaged in qualifying activities.

4.            What do you view to be the most important aspects in preparing an R&D claim?

Firstly, to ensure the claim is maximised.  Preparing a standard R&D claim is far from complicated but unless a company takes proper, experienced advice they risk losing out on cash benefits to which they are entitled.  The real added value lies in identifying all R&D projects undertaken (including work on processes), all qualifying activities, all employees involved and all other qualifying expenditure incurred.

Secondly, the documentation submitted to HMRC in support of a claim is vital.    This helps HMRC to determine whether a company’s activities qualify and therefore a company needs to ensure that the R&D Report contains the required information.

Finally, as part of my consultations with a company, I believe it is important to develop an internal process to assist with future claims and to minimise the input required from their personnel.

Should you wish to speak to Paul he is contactable on paul.arnold@bevanbuckland.co.uk or 01792 41010 / 075575 03140.

http://www.bevanbuckland.co.uk/services/tax/r-d-tax-relief

 

Providing Vital Support for Cash Businesses

Bevan & Buckland AccountantsBevan & Buckland – Providing Vital Support for Cash Businesses

Supporting small to medium sized businesses has always been an important ethos for established accountancy firm Bevan & Buckland, and with news that HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has turned its attention to targeting cash businesses, accessing support to get your tax affairs in order has never been so important.

Independent research revealed that last year alone HMRC collected an extra £470million during tax investigations carried out specifically on small businesses and they are looking to exceed this total entirely during the year ahead, using checks such as ordering test meals and observing trade at cash businesses like restaurants and takeaways.

Investigations can be carried out over a number of days or nights and in some cases multiple teams may be deployed to monitor a business’s nightly trade. HMRC can then follow up with unannounced visits, sometimes outside normal working hours, with requests to inspect books and records to compare against their own observations.

Lee BradleyLee Bradley, Tax Director at Bevan & Buckland said:

“We are aware that visits of this nature are happening throughout the South Wales area as checks of this type help HMRC to obtain essential evidence. Methods such as ordering test meals give HMRC staff an ideal opportunity to count the number of diners and covers in a restaurant, whilst purchases of takeaway food can be noted and compared with any records supplied by the company under scrutiny.”

“Knowing your rights is an important part of the puzzle, and whilst it is important to help HMRC with their investigations, it is also vital to understand where you should draw the line. Understanding the difference between reasonable requests and when you can refuse entry or inspection isn’t easy but our tax specialists can help you decide when to say no, and detail how you should proceed when you are approached by HMRC,” concluded Lee.

Lee Bradley
Tax Director
01792 410119

email: lee@bevanbuckland.co.uk

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Swansea Tel: 01792 410100

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Haverfordwest Tel: 01437 760666

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Pembroke Tel: 01646 682383

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Carmarthen Tel: 01267 233115

Bevan & Buckland Accountants St David’s Tel: 01437 720352

Chartered Accountants, tax and financial planners Langdon House, Langdon Road, Swansea, SAl 8QY 01792410100 tax@bevanbuckland.co.uk

Job vacancy – Trainee Tax Consultant

Bevan & Buckland Accountants logoTrainee Tax Consultant

Bevan & Buckland are now recruiting for a graduate trainee tax consultant to work in the Swansea office.

The position includes a competitive salary and a comprehensive study package for ATT and subsequently CTA.

Bevan & Buckland have been established for over 100 years and have 6 partners and over 70 staff across South West Wales.  The firm has a wide range of clients ranging from personal clients to large companies and offers a wide range of services.

The role will give you training and experience in taxation and business advice. You will work on a varied portfolio of clients’ files whilst enjoying mentorship from our experienced tax team.

Typical entry requirements are minimum 2:1 at University degree level. It is not essential that you have previously studied accountancy as we offer full training. It is, however, essential that you display an analytical mind set and the ability to problem solve and communicate efficiently.

The position is a full time 6 months temporary contract, potentially leading to a full training contract being offered.

It is preferable applicants are able to drive and have their own car.

Candidates who are successful in making the first interview stage will be informed by email before 11th July 2016.

Closing date – 8 July 2016

Please email your CV to Lee Bradley – lee@bevanbuckland.co.uk

Lee Bradley
Tax Director
01792 410119

email: lee@bevanbuckland.co.uk

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Swansea Tel: 01792 410100

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Haverfordwest Tel: 01437 760666

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Pembroke Tel: 01646 682383

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Carmarthen Tel: 01267 233115

Bevan & Buckland Accountants St David’s Tel: 01437 720352

Chartered Accountants, tax and financial planners Langdon House, Langdon Road, Swansea, SAl 8QY 01792410100 tax@bevanbuckland.co.uk

2016 South Wales Charity Conference

Bevan & Buckland Accountants logo2016 South Wales Charity Conference

SCVS, Neath Port Talbot CVS & CAVS would like to invite you to the 2016 South Wales Charity Conference being held on the 10 June 2016 at the new Wales Air Ambulance site in Dafen, Llanelli. The theme for this year’s conference is cybercrime and fraud. charity-conference

Our guest speaker is Kevin Weekes from Zen Solutions and there will be several workshops hosted by Bevan & Buckland, JCP Solicitors and MGB PR.

Refreshments and lunch are provided.

Please see the attached brochure for full details of the day and booking instructions.

For booking queries, please contact Christina Coates on 01792 529630 or by email christina.coates@jcpsolicitors.co.uk

For the full event details: Please read this PDF document

We look forward to seeing you on the 10 June 2016.

Event location
Wales Air Ambulance

Ty Elusen
Llanelli Gate
Dafen
SA14 8LQ

jcp-and-bb

Prepare in the Midst of HMRC’s Campaign

Bevan & Buckland Accountants logoThe UK is the biggest card payment market in the European Union, accounting for more than 30% of all card spending and 73% of credit card spending. With more than 97.4 million debit cards and a further 60 million credit cards in circulation as of January 2016, it is fast becoming the number one way to pay for goods and services, with the introduction of contactless payment in recent years making it even quicker and easier.

Lee Bradley - Tax Director

As a leading accountancy practice serving organisations of all sizes and niches throughout South Wales, Bevan & Buckland is urging businesses everywhere to get their affairs in order and embrace the opportunity available courtesy of the Credit Card Sales Campaign. Despite being launched by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in October 2014, only a small number of individuals and companies in business are taking advantage of the scheme, a fact that the team at Bevan & Buckland is determined to change.

“Whether you are an individual or business the Credit Card Sales Campaign is particularly beneficial. If you accept card payments and have not declared all your UK tax liabilities the initiative means you can get the best possible terms whilst bringing your tax affairs up to date and reflecting these transactions in your return,” said Lee Bradley, Tax Director at Bevan & Buckland at Bevan & Buckland.

HMRC now has more powers and can obtain the number and value of transactions completed by every business that accepts card payments. One case recently identified saw more than half a million pound of tax owed whilst a penalty of up to 100% also had to be paid. Those who have not registered their card payments with HMRC or have failed to declare all of their income are invited by the campaign to make a ‘voluntary disclosure’, an opportunity that means a penalty of as little as 10% can instead be applied.

 “Taking part in the campaign is certainly recommended and it’s easy to make a voluntary disclosure on behalf of your business. A notification form can be completed or you can call the Credit Card Sales Campaign helpline to inform HMRC and begin the process. A disclosure form should then be filled in and what you owe settled. You have up to four months to pay the outstanding balance. HMRC is essentially giving you a chance to put your tax affairs right, and as is always the case, it is better to go to HMRC before they come to you!” concluded Lee.

Need assistance bringing your tax affairs up to date or wish to declare via the Credit Card Sales Campaign? Contact Bevan & Buckland on 01792 410100 for professional advice and support.

For further information about how Bevan and Buckland can help your company with tax issues contact Lee Bradley on 01792 410100 or by email at help@bevanbuckland.co.uk.

 

Lee Bradley
Tax Director
01792 410119

email: lee@bevanbuckland.co.uk

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Swansea Tel: 01792 410100

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Haverfordwest Tel: 01437 760666

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Pembroke Tel: 01646 682383

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Carmarthen Tel: 01267 233115

Bevan & Buckland Accountants St David’s Tel: 01437 720352

Change to Employment Allowance

Bevan & Buckland AccountantsAs of the 6th April 2016, selected companies across Wales will no longer be entitled to claim Employment Allowance. As a specialist in payroll, Swansea accountancy firm Bevan & Buckland has provided essential advice on how the changes could affect businesses from various industry sectors.

TinaBB_001_1The legislative update applies to one director limited companies, not one director only on the payroll, receiving a salary above the Secondary Threshold for Class 1 National Insurance contributions, which sits at £156 per week for the 2016/17 tax year. “It’s important to note that the change to this eligibility criteria only affects limited companies, meaning self-employed individuals will be unaffected. If you are affected by the changes however you must take steps to stop your Employment Allowance claim at the start of the tax year. This adjustment can be made using your payroll software,” said Tina Davies, Payroll Manager at Bevan & Buckland and Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals Member.

To stop your claim simply select ‘no’ in the ‘Employment Allowance indicator’ field of the payroll software, and submit an Employment Payment Summary (EPS) to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). These changes will not affect any claims made in previous years.

“After your software has been updated and HMRC informed, you must ensure you pay the full amount of employer Class 1 National Insurance contributions (NICs) without deducting the Employment Allowance. Should the circumstances of your organisation change with more than one employee or director earning above the Secondary Threshold, your claim can be processed and Employment Allowance applied for the entire tax year, even if these changes come into effect during the tax year,” concluded Tina.

For further information about how Bevan and Buckland can help your company with management of the payroll contact Tina Davies on 01792 410100 or by email at help@bevanbuckland.co.uk.

Tina Davies
MCIPP(dip) Member Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals

Tina Davies is manager of Bevan & Buckland’s Swansea Payroll Department, we also operate a payroll bureau service from the firm’s Pembroke and Haverfordwest offices.  

http://www.bevanbuckland.co.uk/services/payroll Tel: 01792 410117

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Swansea Tel: 01792 410100

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Haverfordwest Tel: 01437 760666

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Pembroke Tel: 01646 682383

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Carmarthen Tel: 01267 233115

Bevan & Buckland Accountants St David’s Tel: 01437 720352

 

Calling all Landlords

Bevan & Buckland AccountantsSettle your taxes before HMRC finds out you are letting residential property.

There are big advantages to making a voluntary disclosure using HMRC’s Let Property Campaign before HMRC enquire. These include:

Lower penalties

Reduced risk of criminal proceedings

•             HMRC has recovered over £50 million in additional tax as a result of a crackdown on landlords who have undeclared or under-declared rental income.

•             Since the Let Property Campaign began over 40,000 landlords who failed to come forward voluntarily have been sent “prompted disclosure” letters, resulting in increased penalties.

Landlord pictureHMRC have developed a powerful computer system which makes it very easy for them to identify people who may not have paid what they owe. They have access to:

·         The Land Registry

·         The Electoral Roll

·         Landlord Deposit Scheme Records

 

So HMRC may already know about your property income – tell them before they come knocking.

If you want to minimise penalties and reduce the risk of criminal proceedings, get in touch with your local tax team at Bevan & Buckland. With our experience in preparing successful disclosures we will talk you through the process at a free initial meeting.

Lee Bradley
Tax Director
01792 410119

email: lee@bevanbuckland.co.uk

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Swansea Tel: 01792 410100

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Haverfordwest Tel: 01437 760666

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Pembroke Tel: 01646 682383

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Carmarthen Tel: 01267 233115

Bevan & Buckland Accountants St David’s Tel: 01437 720352

Chartered Accountants, tax and financial planners Langdon House, Langdon Road, Swansea, SAl 8QY 01792410100 tax@bevanbuckland.co.uk

New Dividend Allowance will affect PAYE tax codes

Bevan & Buckland AccountantsNew Dividend Allowance will affect PAYE tax codes

From 6 April 2016 the Dividend Tax Credit will be replaced by a new Dividend Allowance in the form of a 0% tax rate on the first £5,000 of dividend income per year. This tax will be collected automatically through PAYE in most cases.

As announced in the Summer Budget 2015 a new Dividend Allowance in the form of a 0% tax rate on the first £5,000 of dividend income per year is to replace the Dividend Tax credit from 6 April 2016. HMRC’s Policy Paper provides details:

UK residents will pay tax on any dividends received over the £5,000 allowance at the following rates:

  • 5% on dividend income within the basic rate band
  • 5% on dividend income within the higher rate band
  • 1% on dividend income within the additional rate band

Dividends received on shares held in an Individual Savings Account (ISA) will continue to be tax free.

The finance Bill This legislation will modernise, reform and simplify dividend taxation. Only those with dividend income over £5000 per year, or those who are able to pay themselves dividends in place of wages, will pay more tax.

The majority of non-taxpayers and basic rate taxpayers do not currently need to inform HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) of their dividend income. From April 2016, individuals who receive dividends between £5,001 and £10,000, and who need to pay tax on those dividends at the basic rate, will have to inform HMRC of their dividend income for the first time. This number is estimated to be fewer than 8,500 customers. (Individuals with more than £10,000 of dividend income are already required to be in Self Assessment).

Around 2 million individuals are expected to have some tax to pay on their dividend income after April 2016, compared to 1.8 million if these reforms had not been put in place. This tax will be collected automatically through PAYE in most cases, although further details will be published in good time ahead of any tax being due.

For further information about how Bevan and Buckland can help your company with management of the payroll contact Tina Davies on 01792 410100 or by email at help@bevanbuckland.co.uk.

Tina Davies
MCIPP(dip) Member Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals

Tina Davies is manager of Bevan & Buckland’s Swansea Payroll Department, we also operate a payroll bureau service from the firm’s Pembroke and Haverfordwest offices.  

http://www.bevanbuckland.co.uk/services/payroll Tel: 01792 410117

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Swansea Tel: 01792 410100

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Haverfordwest Tel: 01437 760666

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Pembroke Tel: 01646 682383

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Carmarthen Tel: 01267 233115

Bevan & Buckland Accountants St David’s Tel: 01437 720352

New Digital Tax Regulations

Bevan & Buckland Accountants logoWELSH ACCOUNTANTS READY TO ASSIST SMALL BUSINESSES OVER NEW DIGITAL TAX REGULATIONS

Leading Welsh accountancy firm Bevan & Buckland is warning of new legislation which will transform the way companies submit their tax returns.

By 2020 businesses will be required to move from annual to quarterly online tax reporting.

“This is going to be a culture shock and something of a sea change in the way companies operate their tax accounting,” said Bevan & Buckland’s Tax Director Lee Bradley.

“But we at Bevan & Buckland are there to help firms negotiate their way around the changes before they happen so they are fully versed with the incoming system.”

Added Lee: “There are fears out there especially with regards small business that because of the new digital system it will lead to previously compliant individuals becoming non-compliant.”

The Low Incomes Tax Group (LITRG) has already flagged up its concerns that smaller businesses run by non-digital literate owners or those who do not keep up to date with their tax records may face sanctions from HMRC due to not meeting the new quarterly requirements.

The most at risk from failing the new system include older and disabled people, and those living in remote areas.

There are so many concerns that Andrew Tyrie, chairman of the Treasury Select Committee, has written to the Treasury seeking assurance that businesses will not be compelled to pay tax any earlier than they do now, and that adequate arrangements will be made for businesses that do not use computers.

The proposals require businesses and individual taxpayers to move from annual to quarterly online tax reporting by 2020. The proposals will also include plans for all taxpayers to be using digital accounts, with HMRC information automatically upload.

Anthony Thomas, LITRG chairman, said: “It is very harsh that small businesses with the lowest profit margins may be required to undertake significant investment and training in computer technology simply in order to comply with HMRC’s reporting requirements, and for no other purpose.”

John Allan, national chairman for the Federation of Small Businesses, added: “The UK’s self-employed will particularly struggle with this change. We therefore want to see proper consultation with business groups and professional bodies, a clear statement of benefits to the business community and a package of support to help offset this new burden on business.”

For further information about how Bevan and Buckland can help your company with tax issues contact Lee Bradley on 01792 410100 or by email at help@bevanbuckland.co.uk.

 

Lee Bradley
Tax Director
01792 410119

email: lee@bevanbuckland.co.uk

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Swansea Tel: 01792 410100

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Haverfordwest Tel: 01437 760666

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Pembroke Tel: 01646 682383

Bevan & Buckland Accountants Carmarthen Tel: 01267 233115

Bevan & Buckland Accountants St David’s Tel: 01437 720352