Free accounting software package

AMAZING OFFER! Save Time, Money & Space with a FREE Sage Bookkeeping & Accounts Package!*

Free accounting software package[UPDATE: Please note that this offer has now expired]. Taxfile’s customers can benefit from an incredible offer on a range of Sage accounting packages at the moment. We’re offering a FREE or, in effect, heavily subsidised* Sage accounting package to all active Taxfile customers, whether existing or new. There are various different packages available so we’re sure we’ll have one which will suit every customer perfectly. The list of benefits is almost endless — here are just a few:

  • Firstly we’ll GIVE* Taxfile customers the package — you don’t have to pay Sage at all;
  • Say hello to quick and easy bookkeeping and record-keeping;
  • Quick and easy cash flow management tools;
  • Cloud-based record keeping means you can access accounts records from anywhere with an internet connection;
  • Automatic bank statement integration makes bank reconciliation a breeze, helping when receipts go missing and even recognising – and accounting for – regular transactions;
  • A mobile app module allows you to simply snap a photo of your receipt and it uploads to your Sage account (say goodbye to physical receipt storage!);
  • Less paperwork!
  • Automatic tax computations performed by the software;
  • Report and analysis options;
  • VAT handling;
  • Automatic VAT return options (or let us handle it for you as you prefer);
  • Shows you the taxes and National Insurance due so you can easily pay them on time;
  • Fast and easier tax returns;
  • Help from Taxfile at any point and from Sage’s own helpful videos;
  • Helps you stay in line with UK laws, taxes and regulations;
  • No experience needed;
  • Perfect for the self-employed, start-ups and small businesses;
  • Taxfile will even be happy to set you up;
  • Integrated invoicing and quotation options available (even from your mobile phone!);
  • A quick and easy payroll bolt-on is also available for limited companies, with payslips, RTI, Auto Enrolment integration etc.;
  • Auto enrolment communications included if you have a company pension scheme;
  • Option to automatically integrate online e-commerce records into your Sage account;
  • Fast and easier company accounts preparation;
  • … and much more!

But there is more major benefit – collaboration with us, your accountant!

The Sage packages we supply are not only free, or in effect heavily subsidised depending on the package involved, but also allow us, your accountant and tax adviser, to collaborate with you within your Sage package with your permission. So where you cannot do something yourself, we can log in using our own integrated Sage administration system to get involved on your behalf, for example to set things up for you, run reports, activate VAT returns, tax returns, end of year accounts, payroll and so on. It’s amazing really! So you do as much or as little as you want to … and we cover everything else!

You save money!

Using the easy but powerful Sage bookkeeping and accounting packages supplied by Taxfile
means that you’ll save money. It’s as simple as that. Customers using such packages makes our job easier, reducing our chargeable hours working on your accounts, so quite simply saves you money!

You also save time!

Our Sage packages will save you SO much time you’ll never look back! Once you’ve tried our Sage packages for a while you’ll Read more

George Osborne

How the Chancellor’s 2014 Autumn Statement affects YOU!

George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced his Autumn Statement on Wednesday (3 Dec 2014) in what could be seen as a mini budget. Here we focus on the key announcements, concentrating on those relating purely to taxation, as it is those which affect you, our customers, most directly.

1). First some good news: The UK is seeing the fastest growth out of all the G7 countries, and the number of people employed is at its highest point ever. This is good for all of us because it restores optimism in the UK economy, higher employment speaking for itself.

2). As we announced in a separate blog post, Stamp Duty (Land Tax) has been given a major shake-up and, for anyone buying a house for £935,000 or less, the amount of Stamp Duty which they’ll have to pay will be less, and sometimes very significant. See our separate blog post and infographic for more detail.

3). In the financial year 2015-16, the tax-free personal allowance (which is the amount you can earn before you start to pay any tax) will increase to 10,600 which is an increase of £600. So … more tax-free money in your pocket, which is good.

4). Economy flights will become cheaper for under 12s from 1 May 2015 and under 16s from 1 March 2016, because their tickets will become exempt from tax on those dates. So … a small concession, but another welcome one. Average 4-person families will save £26 for flights within Europe and £142 on flights to the U.S.

5). From 3 December 2014, spouses will be able to inherit their partner’s ISA benefits should their partner pass away. Currently this is not the case and the change will mean that, from 6 April 2015, the surviving spouse or civil partner will be able to Read more

The Shocking Truth about Tax on the Poor

How much is taken in taxHave you ever wondered how much of one’s total income is taken up in tax? And I don’t mean just Income Tax. I mean in ALL taxes paid by ordinary taxpayers throughout the course of a year. Such a figure would need to take into account National Insurance (income tax in all but name, some might say), the insidious Value Added Tax or ‘VAT’ – which on its own is a hefty 20% tax on what is often already taxed money for most ordinary taxpayers, and don’t forget to include Council Tax and finally, of course, Income Tax itself.

Well, the answer may surprise you. Before seeing the answer, though, try The Guardian’s little quiz about this and see how you get on. There are only 8 questions, and for each you simply choose from 4 possible answers – so it’s quick to complete and, once submitted, you are immediately taken to a feedback page where you will be told how your answers compared to the average respondent and, more interestingly, what the correct answers were. It’s interesting to note that, in a joint poll by The Equality Trust and Ipsos MORI, nearly 70% of people drastically underestimated how much the poorest pay in tax, as a percentage of their total income. They also over estimated how much the richest pay as a proportion of total income. This wide misconception is due to most people incorrectly focusing only on Income Tax alone which, in reality, only makes up a small proportion of total taxes paid throughout the course of a typical year.

Spoiler alert: be warned that I’m shortly going to divulge the answers Read more

RTI (Real Time Information) – last Full Payment Submission (FPS) due soon

Exactly eleven months ago at time of writing, HMRC launched ‘RTI’ (Real Time Information) in the UK. This is the mechanism through which employees now have to report PAYE information for employees on the day it actually happens, or alternatively before that day, for example to confirm to HMRC each time an employee is paid through PAYE, including any NI or Income Tax deductions. RTI is, almost without exception, for all employees including those whose earnings fall below the NIC’s Lower Earnings Limit (‘LEL’), e.g. students.

The RTI reporting has to be done electronically using payroll software, whether that’s the employer themselves reporting it, or their nominated accountant, payroll bureau or bookkeeper. The information reported to HMRC will also now need to include new information which includes the usual hours worked by each employee and any unusual break in the normal working pattern, for instance if an employee takes unpaid leave. RTI also includes other changes to how various things are reported e.g. starter and leaver dates and also employers no longer need to submit end of year forms P14 and P35 because this will be handled on the last Full Payment Submission (‘FPS’) for the tax year in question – this is due in less than a month  at time of writing as the new tax year begins Read more

‘Employment Allowance’ to save businesses up to £2k in NIC

In April 2014 the new ‘Employment Allowance’ will be introduced. This will cut up to £2k off the National Insurance costs incurred by businesses and save employers nearly £5.5 billion across the UK as a whole by the end of the Parliament. This equates to £200 per UK employee.

These savings will also be helped by the abolishment of the National Insurance previously paid by businesses for employees under 21 years of age (from April 2015) and by the increase in the “threshold before an employer has to begin paying National Insurance contributions for employees” (from April 2011).

George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, said:

“Small businesses make a vital contribution to our economy, creating jobs and stimulating growth. The ones I have visited today want to expand, take on new staff and make new investments so the actions we have taken to cut the jobs tax will be a real boost to them.” Read more

Autumn Statement by the Chancellor of the Exchequer

George OsborneOn 5 December 2013 George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, gave his Autumn Statement in Parliament. Key announcements included:

  • A rise for the Personal Allowance, as was long-anticipated, to £10,000 in 2014/15;
  • the higher 40% tax rate threshold also increasing to £41,865;
  • A new, transferable, tax allowance of £1,000 for married couples and those in civil partnerships from April 2015;
  • For employees aged under 21 employers will not have to pay Class 1 National Insurance (‘NI’) Contributions on earnings up to the Upper Earnings Limit;
  • Capital Gains Tax (‘CGT’) for future gains will now also apply to NON-resident individuals from April 2015 (previously this had been applied only to UK resident landlords);
  • For 2014/15 the annual ISA subscription limit will increase to £11,880 (of which £5,940 can be in cash);
  • There were also announcements relating to the continuing clamp-down on tax avoidance, improvements and plans for UK infrastructure, and the proposed inheritance tax (‘IHT’) simplification for trusts.

The full speech transcript can be read here or alternatively view the following video recording: 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.

Pension Credits

Pension Credit is a tax-free payment for people aged 60 or over living in Great Britain, giving them extra money each week.
In order to get Pension Credit you do not need to have paid National Insurance Contributions(NIC’s).
Pension Credit is made up two elements:

Guarantee Credit element which might be paid to people over 60 and adds up to their weekly income guaranteeing a certain minimum level.

Savings Credit element, which is an extra amount for people aged 65 or over who have some savings for their retirement. The savings Credit will add up to their Guarantee Credit.

If you live your husband,wife or civil partner than you will need to add up your income in order to have Pension Credit calculated.
You are likely to be entitled to Pension Credit if your weekly income is less than £124.05 if you are single and £189.35 if you have a partner.

You may still be able to get Pension Credit if your weekly income is more than these amounts if, for example, you or your partner:
• have a severe disability
• look after a person who is severely disabled
• have certain housing costs – for example, mortgage interest payments

Also, if you or your partner are 65 or over you may be rewarded for saving for your retirement, up to:
£19.71 if you are single
£26.13 a week if you have a partner

You can get Pension Credit even if you live with your grown-up family, you own your own home or you get financial support from friends, family or charity.
You can apply for Pension Credit by freephone by calling the Pension Credit application line 0800 99 1234 or follow the link for the application form .
You can only apply if you are 60 or over or if you are turning 60 in four months time.

If you need further help, Taxfile’s tax accountants in South London and Exeter would be more than happy to guide you through your application.