In July 2015, the then Chancellor, George Osborne, presented a special Summer Budget, his first without coalition partners. However, one of the important measures announced at that time was the abolition of non-domicile status. The government first declared its intention to legislate such that, from April 2017, any person who has been resident in the UK for more than 15 of the previous 20 years will be deemed to be domiciled in the UK for tax purposes.
The Finance Bill 2017 draft legislation was published on 5 December 2016. The Bill contains the legislation for many of the tax measures that have been announced by the government. The Bill is open for comment until 1 February 2017 with the final details being confirmed in the spring Budget 2017. The majority of the measures in the Bill were announced as part of the Autumn Statement on 23 November 2016 as well as changes announced at Budget 2016 which have not already been enacted.
HMRC has reported that they have reached a milestone in helping to reduce the estimated 500 million phishing emails that are sent to taxpayers every year. HMRC has implemented new controls based on domain-based message authentication, reporting and conformance (DMARC). The security process works by determining which email servers are allowed to send emails on behalf of the organisation.
HMRC has published an updated list of deliberate tax defaulters as at 8 December 2016. The list includes individuals, businesses and companies and lists the amounts on which penalties are due and the amount of penalties charged. The details of a tax defaulter will be held on HMRC’s website for a maximum of twelve months from the date they are first published and are not stored within the national archives.
HMRC has published guidance on paying the new Apprenticeship Levy. The new levy comes into effect from 6 April 2017 at a rate of 0.5% of the employer`s `pay bill`. To exclude smaller employers, a £15,000 annual allowance can be claimed. This will mean that only employers with a pay bill in excess of £3 million will contribute to the levy.
Here is a reminder for anyone going on holiday over Christmas to be aware of their duty and tax free allowances when they are returning to the UK. It remains to be seen what impact Brexit will have on these allowances, however, for the time being the EU allowances remain unchanged. Travelling to an EU country Where tobacco or alcohol is brought in from another EU country no duties or tax will be payable as long as you can demonstrate that the goods are for your own use and that you paid
In the 2016 Budget, the then Chancellor, George Osborne, announced that he would be introducing two new £1,000 tax allowances for property and trading income. The new allowances will come into force from April 2017. The scope of the tax allowance was increased somewhat by the new Chancellor as part of the Autumn Statement 2016 when it was announced that the trading allowance will also apply to certain miscellaneous income from providing assets or services.
Fee-free basic bank accounts were launched on 1 January 2016. Basic bank accounts are for people who do not have a bank account, are ineligible for a standard current account or who can’t use their existing account due to financial difficulty. These accounts are primarily of interest to those with poor credit ratings who may be unable to pass the credit checks for standard bank accounts.
The Chancellor, Philip Hammond, has announced that the government will donate the VAT on sales of the Christmas single in memory of the late MP Jo Cox. All proceeds from the sale of the single will go to the Jo Cox Foundation which supports a range of charities, including the Royal Voluntary Service and White Helmets. The special recording of The Rolling Stones’ hit `You Can’t Always Get What You Want` features cross party MPs, musicians together with members of parliamentary rock group MP4
The final draft version of the Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017 has been published. Subject to Parliamentary approval, the regulations are to come into force on 6 April 2017, a few weeks earlier than originally anticipated. Since the draft regulations were published for consultation back in February 2016, a number of important changes have been made. The regulations apply to “relevant employers”, which are private and voluntary sector employers who employ 250