Corporation Tax - death and taxes

4 March 2023

Corporation Tax hike in April 2023

With the corporation tax rate increasing in April 2023, the timing of income and expenditure could be even more crucial over the next few weeks. What do you need to consider?

Angus Nicolson


12 May 2022

Foreign tax credit relief

What is a foreign tax credit?  If you are working in a foreign country and pay income taxes abroad, then you are entitled to get relief in the UK against the UK tax on the same income.  This should mean you pay the higher of the two tax liabilities, but not pay twice.

Angus Nicolson

6 March 2022

VAT penalty changes delayed by HMRC

The first step towards alignment of VAT penalty charges was due to take place from April 2022. The government has announced a nine-month delay. What does this mean for your business

Angus Nicolson

6 February 2022

Increased HMRC discovery powers

The very latest version of the Finance Bill, published on 11 January 2022, confirms that HMRC will be allowed to issue discovery assessments to collect tax where it believes a person has failed to report a liability. The HMRC “discovery” powers were updated in 2008 and the new proposed law closes a loophole exposed in a recent court case.

Angus Nicolson

14 January 2022

Discovery powers for HMRC to be extended

The government has confirmed that the upcoming Finance Bill will include changes to discovery assessments.  This will allow HMRC to recoup unpaid high income child benefit charges going back almost ten years.

Angus Nicolson

12 December 2021

Directors personal liability for company taxes

Directors personal liability should not be a problem for company directors, but recent changes in the law have changed that.

Company directors have protection by the limited liability status of their company. Recovery  powers granted to HMRC in the Finance Act 2020 can mean that directors could face a personal liability for tax debts of the company in the event of insolvency.
This change has potentially huge ramifications for directors if they intend to go through an insolvency process due to the tax arrears of their company.

Angus Nicolson

3 January 2021

Payments on Account

If you have Payments on Account falling due in January 2021 then you may be considering reducing them.

Before you do that you need to read our post about the ability to pay tax over 11 months.  Because of the interaction of penalties and the overall uncertainty about earnings, you might want to think about a different strategy about minimising your cash flow while avoiding the penalties.

Angus Nicolson

27 October 2020

JSS – the new Job Support Scheme

Key points of the new JSS

  • Basic eligibility for JSS requires the business must be closed by Covid legislation.  Choosing to close because you have no customers does NOT mean you qualify.
  • Claiming starts in early December once the portal opens.
  • Claims are being repaid in arrears, only after you have successfully submitted a claim.

!!! As at 27 October, in Scotland, you will only qualify for JSS Closed if the area is in Tier 4 (which is Tier 3 in England).

Angus Nicolson

7 December 2020

Self-assessment tax due January 2021

If you took advantage of HMRC’s schemes and deferred your tax for VAT and income tax self- assessment because of coronavirus then what options are there to pay?  And when is best to do it?

What about your January 2021 payment?

Angus Nicolson

8 July 2020

SEISS checks by HMRC

If you claimed a covid-19 grant, then you can expect that the SEISS checks (Self-Employment Income Support Scheme) will apply to you. Although it was easy to claim and qualify, you need to assume that HMRC will be checking claims next year.
The checks will be anti-fraud measures and checks on eligibility, so what records do you need to back up your claim?

Angus Nicolson

11 June 2020

Termination payment to a director

A termination payment to a director may become part of your tax planning in these difficult times, if your business has to close.

You be aware that the most tax-efficient method of getting the money out of your company when it closes down is to wind it up and take its cash and other assets.  That way the maximum rate of tax on what you receive is 10%, assuming that capital gains tax (CGT) entrepreneurs’ relief (ER) applies. This is true but it overlooks what you might be entitled to receive entirely tax free

Angus Nicolson

30 May 2020

Local Authority Grants – tax treatment

Under the coronavirus special measures, local authority grants can help businesses with Small Business Grant Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF) payments. If your business receives such a grant must it pay tax on it?

Angus Nicolson

9 May 2020

Government Gateway account

Government Gateway account

You will need a Gateway account to be able to claim the Self Employment Income Support Scheme. Here are the instructions how to create an account.

Angus Nicolson

25 March 2020

Job Retention Scheme

Details of the Job Retention Scheme and Business Interruption Loans, as updated on 13/4/20.  Now with details of how to claim, and what we will do for you.

The published version of the information is at and covers the scheme in some detail.  HMRC will continue to issue further guidance using their new powers to explain precisely how the scheme will operate.

The Coronavirus Job Retention scheme provide for government grants which will cover 80% of the normal salary of PAYE employees who would otherwise have been laid off as a result of this crisis. The scheme is open to any employer and will cover the cost of wages backdated to 1 March 2020 and will be open before the end of April. It will continue for at least three months, and can include workers who were in employment on 28 February.

Angus Nicolson

17 March 2020

Payroll continuity

Payroll continuity is vital in these troubled and unprecedented times. One of the major concerns for business is ensuring the resilience of payments to all their employees.

We totally understand that many businesses and accountancy firms rely on a single individual to process their payroll. Therefore, employers have to hope that staff holidays aren’t at times that disrupt this process.  In addition, that staff illness does not interrupt the work.

Angus Nicolson

24 January 2020

AIA – Annual Investment Allowances – are cut

The AIA – the Annual Investment Allowance – will drop to £200,000 at the end of 2020.  If your accounting year crosses that date, then you can expect the new transitional rules to unexpectedly restrict your entitlement further.  Are there any steps can you take to work around this?  (Spoiler alert: yes)

Angus Nicolson

1 November 2019

Payments on Account – what are they?

Payments on Account are the way in which HMRC get you to pay next year’s tax bill in advance. As a result, the idea is very simple but, inevitably, there are added complications that leave everyone scratching their heads.


Angus Nicolson

17 January 2019

VAT Registration tips and hints

The main VAT registration test for an unregistered trader is based on traders checking historic sales on a rolling twelve-month basis to ensure they have not exceeded £85,000.

But there is also a second test to consider. You must register for VAT if your forecast taxable sales exceed £85,000 in the next 30 days alone. The registration date is the beginning of the 30-day period. This test ensures that large businesses have to register as soon as they start trading in the UK. For example, immediate registration applies to a large retailer opening a new UK shop as a separate limited company.

Angus Nicolson

27 December 2018

Leases and IFRS16

IFRS16 is a new international accounting standard for reporting lease transactions.  This will become effective for periods commencing 1 January 2019 if your business prepares its accounts under International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) or FRS 101.

If your accounts are prepared under FRS102 or FRS105 then you don’t have to worry about this quite yet. 

Whilst the FRC has not set a date to incorporate the changes to IFRS into FRS 102, it is widely expected to be included as part of the 2022 FRS 102 triennial review.

Angus Nicolson

5 August 2018

Directors, their address, and Companies House

If you form a limited company there are many responsibilities as a director. One of these is about accounting and one is about transparency of your address. All company directors need to report certain addresses to Companies House, and these will appear on the public record.

Angus Nicolson

11 June 2018

High Income Child Benefit charge

The High Income Child Benefit charge can result in a parent having to repay the full amount of Child Benefit received.  But not claiming Child Benefit may not be the best way to deal with this.

Anyone who is responsible for a child should claim Child Benefit at a rate of £20.70 per week for the first child, and £13.70 for each subsequent child. What’s quoted are the 2018/19 rates and changes should be updated on the HMRC Child Benefit pages once they occur.

Angus Nicolson

2 March 2018

Capital Gains Tax and PPR relief

Capital Gains Tax is chargeable on all gains, including your Principal Private Residence (“PPR”), but there are some allowances and deductions which can reduce the tax you have to pay.

Angus Nicolson

12 November 2017

OSCR accounts are an advert

For a few years now we have been advising our clients to treat their OSCR accounts as advertisements for their activities.  Now OSCR are giving exactly the same advice.

Angus Nicolson

23 May 2017

CIS Refunds

Nicolson have recovered around £1,000,000 in CIS for clients in the past 18 months with one client receiving a cheque in excess of £300,000 that their previous agent told them they weren’t due.

Angus Nicolson

17 April 2017

Cyber Security – keeping your data safe

At Nicolson Accountancy we take our Cyber Security very seriously and it is a key part of our business. We know your data is precious so that when you send us information we want you to know that we always keep it safe and secure.

Angus Nicolson

15 December 2016

Scottish Tax rates differ from the rest of the UK

In the Scottish Budget today, Finance Secretary Derek MacKay set the Scottish Tax levels.  He announced that the higher rate tax band for individuals resident in Scotland would not increase by as much as that in the rest of the UK.

Angus Nicolson

22 October 2016

Companies must check their CT600 online

“Making tax digital” is the latest change to CT600 forms that will affect taxpayers and although it is some distance away HMRC is making major structural changes in preparation. The latest moves, which it announced on 19 September 2016, include withdrawing tax return confirmations for companies.

Angus Nicolson

30 August 2016

Personal  bank statements can be business records

The First-tier Tribunal has confirmed that a taxpayer’s statutory records can include statements for a personal bank account if the account is used for business purposes. As a result, HMRC’s information notice requesting those statements was not appealable. Akrill v HMRC [2016] UKFTT 0550 (TC).

Angus Nicolson

24 April 2016

Acquisition of Judge & Co

We are delighted to announce that we have acquired the practice of Judge & Co, Chartered Accountants, of Glasgow with immediate effect. Judge & Co was founded in 1999 and serves over 200 clients across Scotland, providing personal tax and accounting services, very similar to our existing clients.

Angus Nicolson

21 April 2016

Changes to dividend tax

We have circulated a newsletter for clients to outline the changes in dividend tax which will occur in April 2016, and you can download a copy of the newsletter.

Angus Nicolson

18 February 2016

Limiting access to Altinn?

If you have received a letter this week from DIFI (who manage the electronic systems for Skatteetaten), you might think that your access to Altinn may be being limited significantly.

Angus Nicolson

5 February 2016

Auto Enrolment penalties surge

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) said that it made 1,021 £400 fixed-penalty notices between 1 October and 31 December on employers that did not automatically put workers into a pension scheme.

Angus Nicolson

9 November 2015

Years of farming losses disallowed

The First-tier Tax Tribunal has refused to allow trading tax relief on the losses of a farmer’s sheep-breeding business, because it had made a loss in several successive years and so had no ‘reasonable expectation of profit’ as required by s68 of the Income Tax Act 2007.

Angus Nicolson

8 November 2015

Disqualified director

It is possible for an individual to be disqualified as a director of any limited company. This can arise where the company has been badly mismanaged; where someone has continued to trade and lose money for their creditors, when they should have taken professional advice.

Angus Nicolson

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