Domestic Reverse Charge for VAT within the Construction Industry Scheme

IMPORTANT UPDATE!

On 06/09/2019 HMRC announced that the Domestic Reverse Charge will be postponed for 12 months and will come into effect 01/10/2020.   Their official statment;

“To help these businesses and give them more time to prepare, the introduction of the reverse charge has been delayed for a period of 12 months until 1 October 2020. This will also avoid the changes coinciding with Brexit.”

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From 1st October 2019 HMRC will introduce the Domestic Reverse Charge for VAT returns within the construction industry if certain criteria are met.

HMRC states it is aware of the large scale fraud that has occured within the industry, whereby construction businesses charge VAT for their services but then disappear without paying their VAT bill, taking with them the 5% or 20% as additional profit.  They have also managed to under cut their prices against  many businesses working legitimately with the knowledge that they will have this additional ‘profit’.  Therefore,  by moving the VAT charge down the supply chain, HMRC intends to make this kind of fraud impossible.

Any company that is VAT registered and works under the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) providing the following services may be subject to the Domestic Reverse Charge;

  • constructing, altering, repairing, extending, demolishing or dismantling buildings or structures (whether permanent or not), including offshore installation services
  • constructing, altering, repairing, extending, demolishing of any works forming, or planned to form, part of the land, including (in particular) walls, roadworks, power lines, electronic communications equipment, aircraft runways, railways, inland waterways, docks and harbours
  • pipelines, reservoirs, water mains, wells, sewers, industrial plant and installations for purposes of land drainage, coast protection or defence
  • installing heating, lighting, air-conditioning, ventilation, power supply, drainage, sanitation, water supply or fire protection systems in any building or structure
  • internal cleaning of buildings and structures, so far as carried out in the course of their construction, alteration, repair, extension or restoration
  • painting or decorating the inside or the external surfaces of any building or structure
  • services which form an integral part of, or are part of the preparation or completion of the services described above – including site clearance, earth-moving, excavation, tunnelling and boring, laying of foundations, erection of scaffolding, site restoration, landscaping and the provision of roadways and other access works

Services excluded from the Domestic Reverse Charge include;

  • drilling for, or extracting, oil or natural gas
  • extracting minerals (using underground or surface working) and tunnelling, boring, or construction of underground works, for this purpose
  • manufacturing building or engineering components or equipment, materials, plant or machinery, or delivering any of these to site
  • manufacturing components for heating, lighting, air-conditioning, ventilation, power supply, drainage, sanitation, water supply or fire protection systems, or delivering any of these to site
  • the professional work of architects or surveyors, or of building, engineering, interior or exterior decoration and landscape consultants
  • making, installing and repairing art works such as sculptures, murals and other items that are purely artistic
  • signwriting and erecting, installing and repairing signboards and advertisements
  • installing seating, blinds and shutters
  • installing security systems, including burglar alarms, closed circuit television and public address systems

The final criteria is whether the service being provided is to the the ‘end-user’ or ‘intermediary supplier’.  If it is then the normal way of charging VAT applies, if not, then the Domestic Reverse Charge applies.  Please see the flowchart below to see if the Domestic Reverse Charge applies to you:

What is an ‘End User’?

For reverse charge purposes consumers and final customers are called end users. They are businesses, or groups of businesses, that do not make onward supplies of the building and construction services in question, but they are registered for CIS as mainstream or deemed contractors because they carry out construction operations, or because the value of their purchases of building and construction services exceeds the threshold for CIS.

What is an ‘Intermediary Supplier’?

Intermediary suppliers are VAT and CIS registered businesses that are connected or linked to end users.

To be connected or linked to an end user, intermediary suppliers must either:

  • share a relevant interest in the same land where the construction works are taking place
  • be part of the same corporate group or undertaking as defined in section 1161 of the Companies Act 2006

It will be your responsibility to ask your contractor whether they are the end user or intermediary.

If they are not, then you will not receive the VAT for the supplies being provided.  This will effect your cash flow.  Furthermore, if you are on a flat rate scheme, then the scheme will more than likely no longer be beneficial for you.  If your sales are subject to the domestic reverse charge, then you would be considered as a regular repayment trader and could enrol on a monthly VAT return scheme to ease your cash flow by getting the VAT paid back to you on your expenses.

As the supplier, you will need to issue VAT invoices that clearly indicate the supplies are subject to the domestic reverse charge and that the customer is required to account for the VAT. The VAT due should be clearly stated however should not be included in the amount shown as total amount charged.

If the domestic reverse charge applies, invoices should clearly indicate the reverse charge applies using the correct terminology. HMRC suggests businesses use any of the following:

  • Reverse charge: VAT Act 1994 Section 55A applies
  • Reverse charge: S55A VATA 94 applies
  • Reverse charge: Customer to pay the VAT to HMRC

It should be clear on the invoice that the reverse charge mechanism has been applied.

You invoice should still show all the usual information required for a VAT invoice.

The legislation stipulates that if there is a reverse charge element in a supply then the whole supply will be subject to reverse charge if the parties agree. It will also cover the provision of construction services that includes materials.

There is no minimum threshold from which the reverse charge would apply.

Please contact us on 020 8761 8000 or email ali.asilzadeh@taxfile.co.uk if you would like to discuss how the domestic reverse charge will effect your business.

Taxfile's May 2018 e-newsletter

May Newsletter – New Battersea Branch, Easy CIS Tax Refunds, Avoid £10 Daily Fines & More

Taxfile's May 2018 e-newsletter

Our informative May e-Newsletter is now ready to view online. It includes exciting news of our new branch opening in Battersea along with important tax and accountancy-related news that might affect you. Here is a quick summary of the newsletter’s contents:

  • The first article announces the opening of our new Battersea Branch in London SW8. New and existing customers are welcome to pop in and say hello and to get expert help with your tax affairs and accountancy requirements. Learn more about the opening of the Battersea branch, and the core services on offer, here or click the big button below to read the newsletter.
  • If you work on one of the many Battersea construction sites in or around SW8, we can help you reclaim overpaid tax and much more … see the newsletter for more details – click the big button below.
  • If you’re a sub-contractor working in the construction industry scheme (‘CIS’), you’re almost certainly due a tax refund (learn why here). Taxfile are experts at getting tax rebates from HMRC, so come and see us and we’ll get you the maximum refund possible. Read the newsletter (click the big button below) to learn how we make your tax refund application fast and hassle-free.
  • We can help limited company contractors too! We’re tax and accountancy experts so we can help you register as a limited company or register for CIS if you’re not already set up, we’ll help you with the monthly tasks demanded of you by HMRC including accounts preparation, confirmation statements, corporation tax handling, CIS set-off rebate, National Insurance (NI), VAT, bookkeeping, payroll and much more. We’ll save you time and will make operating the Construction Industry Scheme a breeze. Click the pink newsletter button below for more details.
  • If you introduce a family member, friend or colleague to Taxfile, you will get a discount off your next tax return if they sign up as a new paying customer with us. Click the button for details.
  • Taxfile recently printed some brightly coloured postcards to promote our new Battersea office and our tax-related services. Simply get in contact if you’d like some of these postcards to hand out to colleagues. If you write your full name on the back and use it to refer a colleague, it might even save you money! Click the button for more details.
  • Our team are multi-lingual and always happy to help. If English is not your first language, let us know and we’ll try to match you to the most appropriate staff member.
  • If you, your friends, family or colleagues have not dealt with your old tax returns, HMRC will be adding £10 per day to the penalty from 1st May. That’s on top of the £100 fine that will have applied immediately after missing the original 31 January deadline. Let Taxfile get your tax records, tax returns and overdue tax all in order so you don’t have to pay any more in fines than you have already. Learn more here or contact your nearest branch for a consultation.
  • All Taxfile clients get free ‘Tax Enquiry Fee Protection Insurance when they file their tax return through Taxfile by the statutory deadline. So – if you’re investigated by HMRC – our fees to sort it out are covered. Click the button for more details.

Feel free to Read more

Taxfile's new Battersea branch in London SW8

New Battersea Branch – Now Open in London SW8!

Taxfile's new Battersea branch in London SW8

Our new branch is now open in Battersea, London SW8. You’ll find it very convenient if you work nearby — we’re at Cloisters Business Centre, near Battersea Park Station, just off Battersea Park Road (A3205). You can park easily too – just pull into the business centre and you’ll find us opposite the church, on the ground floor with the brown door (unit 4). Come and see us there too if you’re an existing client and find Battersea more convenient than our Tulse Hill and Dulwich Village offices.

During April & May, the Battersea branch is open from 11am right through to 7pm from Monday to Thursday — so you don’t need to take a day off work to come and see us. On Fridays we’re open 11am to 3pm by appointment and Faiz will be a familiar face to many that day.

The new Battersea branch will especially suit construction workers in the building industry, which is very active in this location. Contractors who have set up as limited companies will find our CIS work, payroll and bookkeeping services very useful, affordable and convenient. Meanwhile, sub-contractors will like the fact that we’re experts at getting workers tax refunds and rebates, particularly if they’ve been working within the Construction Industry Scheme (‘CIS’). We claim thousands back from HMRC on their behalf every year.

Call 020 7821 9444 for a free 20 minute consultation at the Battersea branch, or 020 8761 8000 for Tulse Hill, Dulwich and all other branches.

Taxfile’s Battersea branch is at Studio 4, Cloisters House, Cloisters Business Centre, Battersea Park Road, London SW8 4BG. Opening hours: Mon-Thurs 11am-7pm (& Fridays 11am-3pm by appointment). Visit our new, stand-alone Battersea branch website for more details.

CIS tax refunds and returns - help now available across the UK

Help with CIS Tax Returns & Refunds Across the UK

CIS tax refunds and returns - help now available across the UK

As well as having 2 London based teams dealing with CIS returns and refunds, we’ve now introduced the same service for clients who are further afield in the UK. If you are a CIS contractor or sub-contractor we now have tax help available in the South West, the North East, the North West and, of course, our existing services in London and the South East of England.

More specifically, we can help you if you are:

  • in Cornwall/Devon (within a 30 mile radius of the Plymouth PL12 post code),
  • in Yorkshire in the North East (within a 50 mile radius of S72 post code area),
  • in the Carlisle region in the North of England,
  • in or around Exeter, Topsham, & Plymouth in Devon,
  • Of course, that’s on top of the existing bases in Tulse Hill and Dulwich in South London,
  • And our brand new tax & CIS refunds office in Battersea, London SW8.

So if you’re near any of these areas and need professional help with any aspect of accounting and tax, particularly for construction industry CIS tax returns and refunds, do get in touch.

In the first instance, call us on 0208 761 8000 to arrange an appointment with your nearest Taxfile representative, book an appointment online or use the contact form below to send us a message about your particular tax situation or accountancy needs. We’ll make paperwork and claiming any tax refund easy! Read more

Last few Saturday appointments for claiming CIS tax refunds!

*Last Few Saturday Appointments* for Claiming CIS Tax Refunds!

Last few Saturday appointments for claiming CIS tax refunds!

If you still haven’t claimed your CIS tax refund or submitted the tax return, Taxfile can help! However, there are only a few remaining Saturday appointments left for those wishing to see us at the weekend. So, call 0208 761 8000 or book your free appointment in Tulse Hill here without delay.

Your figures and records are required for the period 6 April 2016 to 5 April 2017, including CIS statements and receipts etc. Learn more about what documents you need to supply and how we can help you apply for your refund and submit your CIS tax return for you, here. Or, alternatively,  Read more

Autumn Newsletter 2016

Taxfile’s Autumn Newsletter 2016

Taxfile's Autumn Newsletter 2016

Taxfile's Autumn Newsletter 2016Hot off the press is our brand new Autumn newsletter for 2016. If you haven’t yet seen it, take a look because it’s jam-packed full of useful information that’ll help you keep your tax affairs and accounts in order, save you money and keep you up to speed on tax matters. Here’s a quick flavour of what’s included (or click the thumbnail image to view or download the newsletter):

  • Act fast to save money on your 2015-16 tax return – see the newsletter’s first article.
  • Sub-contractors working in the construction industry are invited to claim their CIS tax refunds through Taxfile, so they have their refund in time for Christmas!
  • Help if you’re late with any previous years’ tax returns and tax payments — and how you already owe HMRC at least £1300 if you haven’t filed your 2014/15 tax return or paid tax for that year.
  • Try the UK’s Number 1 cloud-based accounts package FREE, for a month. No credit card required – cancel at any time – full details are included in the newsletter. [UPDATE: Please note that this offer has now expired].
  • Help if your tax affairs are in a mess — are you late filing returns or paying tax? Are you worried about HMRC penalties? Are you a foreign worker, working in the UK, and need to get your tax records up to date following the Brexit decision? We’re here to help!
  • Taxfile are Finalists in the ‘Independent Firm of the Year, Greater London’ category of the British Accountancy Awards 2016.
  • Free tax enquiry Fee Protection Insurance for Taxfile customers who file their tax returns by the statutory deadline through Taxfile.
  • How online banking may save you time and money.
  • Introduce a new client to Taxfile and save 10% on our fees!
  • Saturday opening at Taxfile (Tulse Hill office) throughout November and December.
  • Help with all your tax and accounting needs – check out our list of all the things we can help you with — now including auto enrolment!
  • And a ‘thank you’ to all Taxfile customers … Read more
CIS - tax refunds for construction workers

Construction Industry Scheme (CIS): How to Claim a Tax Refund

CIS - tax refunds for construction workersIt’s now time to start the process of claiming your tax refund if you are a subcontractor working within the construction industry and have been paying tax, in advance, through the Construction Industry Scheme (‘CIS’). In this article we will tell you how you qualify and how to claim your tax refund. First, though, a little bit of background to the scheme:

The CIS Scheme

The Construction Industry Scheme, or CIS, is a scheme whereby a contractor in the construction industry usually deducts a proportion of the money due to their subcontractor, at source. The deducted amount is then passed direct to HMRC and counts towards the subcontractor’s tax and National Insurance, the tax element effectively being paid in advance. The exact proportion deducted depends on whether the subcontractor concerned has registered under the CIS system. If the subcontractor has not registered, the deduction will usually be made at a rate of 30%. If they have already registered, then the deduction will usually be made at a rate of 20%. Either way, by the financial year end, the amount of tax deducted at source will usually end up being more than they really needed to have paid, simply because it won’t have factored in the personal allowance which every UK taxpayer is entitled to (most UK citizens can earn up to £10,000 before paying tax at time of writing, this figure being set to rise to £10,600 in the tax year 2015-16, 10,800 a year later then increasing to £11,000 by 2017-18 following the recent budget proposals). Hence, many subcontractors in the construction industry will be due a tax refund because of the overpayment. The good news is that the time to apply for the refund is pretty much now, so get in touch if you’d like our help claiming.

What kind of work does CIS cover?

You qualify to be in the CIS system if you are a subcontractor who supplies construction work to buildings. This includes labouring, decorating, site preparation and refurbishment but excludes things like architecture, surveying services, the hire of scaffolding without labour, the fitting of carpets, the delivery of materials, and finally non-construction type services such as site facilities (canteens etc.).

What if your business is not in the UK?

Even if your business is abroad, the same rules apply if you work as a subcontractor within the UK. However there are some slightly different rules regarding the treatment of taxation for non-resident workers from countries which have ‘Double Taxation’ treaties with the UK (we can, of course, also help with that — just get in contact).

Registering for CIS

If you haven’t already registered for CIS as a sub-contractor, Taxfile can help to do this for you. You’ll need to be registered for Self Assessment (we can also help with this) and this will give you your UTR (unique taxpayer reference) number. We’ll also need your name, National Insurance number, your legal business/trading name and contact details. Once registered with CIS one of the immediate benefits will be that you’ll then have tax deductions made at the 20% rate rather than at 30%, which would otherwise be the case. If your business is a legal partnership you will also need to register it for CIS but this would need to be done in addition to being registered as an individual or sole trader. Of course, Taxfile can help with that too. Once you have been registered with CIS and have passed certain eligibility criteria, it is also possible to apply for ‘gross payment status’ meaning that you’ll then be paid by the contractor without the usual ‘at source’ deductions. Instead you’ll need to pay any outstanding tax and National Insurance at the financial year end; however HMRC will review your business each year to check that you still qualify for this status (paying tax late and/or submitting returns late would put your gross payment status at risk).

Offsetting Expenses against your tax

Taxfile can also help you to offset certain expenses against your subcontractor income. This means that any tax refund will be larger — or any tax outstanding will be lower. We can offset Read more

C.I.S. Subbies: claim your refund for Christmas!

CIS Construction workers get a tax refund in time for Christmas![UPDATED]: Calling all subbies! Claim your refund in time for Christmas AND get a 5% discount on Taxfile prices if you submit your records to us before 21st December!

If you’re a sub-contractor working in the UK construction industry, the first thing you should do is register for CIS (the Construction Industry Scheme). This gives you your own unique tax reference and you effectively become self-employed from a tax standpoint. Taxfile can help set you up on the CIS system (we charge just £36 + VAT for this at time of writing).

Once enrolled, any earnings will automatically be taxed, at source, at 20%. However, with the personal allowance being set at around £10,600 per annum in most cases, this means that many subbies will have overpaid tax and will be due a refund at the end of the tax year. Taxfile are experts at recovering this type of tax for construction workers. We can analyse income, offset any applicable expenditure and allowances, work out the correct National Insurance and income tax, then submit an accurate tax return. 9 out of 10 subbies using Taxfile receive a tax refund within 3 to 4 weeks, many of those receiving in excess of £1000. Taxfile do more than 500 of these annually and Read more

Taxfile: Introduction to IR35

IR35 is an Intermediaries legislation which took effect from April 2000.
According to HMRC, the aim of IR35 is “to eliminate the avoidance of tax and National Insurance Contributions (NICs) through the use of intermediaries, such as Personal Service Companies or partnerships, in circumstances where an individual worker would otherwise –
•For tax purposes, be regarded as an employee of the client; and
•For NICs purposes, be regarded as employed in employed earner’s employment by the client.”

Before the introduction of this tax legislation, workers/contractors who owned their own companies were allowed to receive payments from clients direct to the company and then distribute the profits as dividends, which are not subject to National Insurance payments.

The IR35 does not focus on a certain profession or occupation. It mainly targets people working through service companies like medical staff, teachers , legal and accountancy staff, construction industry workers, IT contractors, engineering contractors, clerical workers, etc.

Through this legislation, HMRC is trying to make sure that taxpayers meet their obligations to pay the correct tax and NI: “we [HMRC] have a duty to ensure things are put right for the past and, where appropriate, for the future. Interest and penalties may be charged on any additional tax/NICs due as a result of any review or enquiry.”

So Whether you are caught by IR depends on a number of factors. It is a very complex tax area and legal advice is essential in order to protect your interests.

Workers in Construction Industry Scheme

We recently came across a client who got very confused about becoming a limited company and his tax position.

If people are both self employed and/or employed and they only work part of a tax year on that basis, it is likely that they would not have time and understanding of the implications of becoming an employee of their own limited company to organise their own salary in the first few months of trading.
The situation will then exist that they have a tax return to do for April 5th which has only a part years earnings, which gives rise to a personal tax rebate.
The limited company then has a payroll scheme of its own for future tax efficient drawings.
So year one of setting up a limited company can appear very beneficial (contact Taxfile to set up an ltd as a one stop shop for all your tax needs).
Year two may then give rise to a profit which can be taxed as employee’s drawings (director) and if the director is prudent by leaving a tax reserve in the firm at the year end, then a potential tax efficient dividend may be possible (remember you can choose your year end to be a point when adequate reserves are in hand, you can only change it once in every five years. (Come to Taxfile to make sure you get the best year end solution).
The scheme for the taxing of the directors drawings and the subcontracted workers can be easily administered by the director, if there is a good margin between the gross works done and the labour costs then it is usual to see a favourable set off position at the end of each month.
To sum up, the business may have had 20% stopped on more of the income than the tax it has stopped from the subcontracted worker, this being the case then no tax needs to be handed to HMRC that month, the contractor/director must complete a CIS 300 list every month to state the tax stopped from every verified subcontractor ( HMRC do a great DIY course which is free to attend).
Any surplus tax suffered can be reclaimed back to the company at payroll year end 5th April on the companies p35 (it can take a few months for HMRC to agree the repayment as sometimes they ask for proof of the tax suffered, so good records of the work done and tax suffered are essential), once the tax is rebated then it comes back to the company to bolster the reserves.
The company accountant (come to Taxfile for the best in service from a Taxfile accountant) will then advise you of your corporation tax assuming you have supplied your banking records (preferably quarterly by online bank downloads which can be easily uploaded for analysis) . The corporation tax is due 9 months after the year end, so a good CIS rebate can often cover the corporation tax if the company is a labour only supplier which makes a reasonable margin after retentions.

If you are still confused about the way the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) works you can always rely on Taxfile’s tax specialists in South London and Exeter to guide you through any potential tax issues.