Local professional support - August 2016

HMRC’s ‘careless’ approach fails to topple Mr Steady
Over the last few years, we have had a lot to say about HMRC’s increasingly strict approach to imposing penalties for what is considered to be substandard 'behaviour' where taxpayers get things wrong when submitting their annual self assessment tax returns.

Transparency is not a one way street
Dispute resolution with HMRC has changed out of all recognition since the controversy a few years ago over the so-called sweetheart deals with Vodafone and Goldman Sachs. There is now a formalised structure within HMRC for the handling of complex and high-value disputes and an annual report on dispute resolution has been published. A number of things struck me about the latest published report.

Who will bear the brunt of any tax increases?
In the aftermath of the UK’s decision to leave the EU, George Osborne announced that the rate of corporation tax in the UK may fall to below 15 per cent to help maintain the UK’s competitiveness as an attractive place in which to do business. If this is implemented, what would the impact be on other taxes?

When does a ‘granny flat’ become a second home?
If someone is looking for an excuse not to buy a property with an annexe (or granny flat) for the in-laws to live in, it looks like having to pay an additional three per cent stamp duty land tax (SDLT) is not going to be one of them.  

What are directors’ duties?
The duties of directors are owed to the company as a whole and arise out of common law. In part those common law duties have been codified and replaced by the Companies Act 2006 which provides that a director owes seven statutory duties to the company they are appointed over.