November Newsletter

November Newsletter

When will budget day be now?:

It was announced on 14 October that Sajid Javed’s first budget would be on 6 November but with a general election in December when will it be now?

The current political uncertainty makes it difficult to give clear tax advice as a number of key proposals in the draft Finance Bill scheduled to take effect from April 2020 might not now take place, due to the December general election.

The key tax measures “in limbo” until legislated in Finance Act 2020 are:

- Extending the “off-payroll” working rules to the private sector

- Restricting R&D repayable credit for SMEs

- Limiting CGT private residence and lettings reliefs

- The proposed 2% reduction in P11d car benefits

The “off-payroll” working rules will almost certainly proceed, even if not from 6 April 2020, and thus businesses and workers affected should prepare for the planned changes. Contact us if you need help in assessing the likely impact on your business.

 

Apply for more time for MTD digital links:

For VAT periods starting on or after 1 April 2020 (or 1 October 2020 for deferred businesses) your accounting systems must use digital links for any transfer or exchange of data between software programs, products or applications used as functional compatible software. That is the end of the current 12 month “soft landing” extension.

Businesses with complex or legacy IT systems may require a longer period to put digital links in place. These businesses can apply to HMRC for additional time to put the required digital links in place. If your business qualifies then the additional time will be granted as a specific direction from HMRC.

If, for example, your company purchases another business it may take additional time to digitally link different software applications or packages to meet the MTD legal obligations. HMRC will consider an application to extend the digital link deadline longer than the “soft landing” period.  That would mean the businesses would continue to be able to “cut and paste” during the extension period.

 

Furnished holiday lettings businesses also qualify for capital gains tax relief:

As mentioned above furnished holiday lettings businesses are eligible for capital allowances on equipment in the property. Where the business incurs finance costs such as mortgage interest the restriction that applies to other residential property businesses does not apply to furnished holiday lettings.

It should also be noted that qualifying furnished holiday lettings businesses are eligible for a number of important reliefs from capital gains tax. “Rollover” relief would apply where the proceeds of sale of a property are reinvested in another qualifying asset and it is also possible to claim holdover relief on the gift of the whole or part of property business. Note also that entrepreneurs’ relief would be available on the disposal of the furnished holiday lettings business.

As mentioned in a previous newsletter the Office of Tax Simplification have recommended that furnished holiday lettings businesses should qualify for inheritance tax (IHT) business property relief which, if legislated, should mean no IHT payable when the business is passed on during lifetime or on death.

 

Avoiding Burnout:

In today’s “always-on” society, business owners and managers are under more pressure than ever.

Stress related workplace burnout is now recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as an official medical diagnosis. Here are some tips to help to avoid burnout.

Manage your time

It's impossible to sustain long-term happiness without appropriately balancing your professional and personal time. Avoiding burnout means using that time wisely, both now and in the future. Use an Outlook calendar or scheduling tool to keep close tabs on how you're spending your time. Regularly assess your week: How much time are you spending in the office? How much work do you do at home? How much time do you have fully to yourself? If any of those numbers look out of line, that's a sign that something needs to change.

Use your full holiday entitlement

A high proportion of business professionals don't use all of their annual leave days and they're paying the price for it. Time off work can provide a big boost to your productivity, creativity and overall job satisfaction. Working through your holiday might feel like the right thing to do for your career, but only increases the likelihood of burnout in the long run. Take holidays that will be good for your overall mental health - go somewhere relaxing and new. Even if it's just to a nearby destination, a change of scenery can go a long way toward helping you gain perspective on where you're at in life.

Separate work and home life

One of the most common ways burnout occurs is through work creep. When professional responsibilities start to creep into your out-of-office life, whether it's in the evening, over the weekends or on holiday, that's a sign that burnout is approaching. People who work from home are most susceptible as the dividing line between work and family time is merely a closed door. One way of avoiding creep is by disconnecting. If your phone and laptop are always on and at the ready while you're at home, then you've never really left the office at all. Make an effort to fully unplug from the job when you're on your own time, and you'll notice a shift in how much you get from your time at home. Also, focusing your attention on different aspects of your life will help you feel more invigorated and creative when it's time to work again.

Embrace remote working

On the same note, you can get a change of scenery without fully leaving work behind. While it's important to completely disconnect during holiday time, working remotely can give your work the breath of fresh air it needs without fear of falling behind. Remote work has other benefits as well, such as increased productivity and a boost in company culture.

Taking a step back from the office allows you to work at your own pace and dictate your own style - and that can make a big difference in your overall job satisfaction. In order to make the most of your career, you need to be prepared to take a long term approach to how you work. Burnout cuts things short. Your career is a marathon, not a sprint.