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Lorraine Dale from Rightway Accounting took yesterdays promo slot at the Chelmsford BWN event to share some top tips for this critical time of year for business (Ok so all year is critical – but this is the time of year accountants live off of coffee and get panic calls from last minute worried business owners – Lorraine shared some ideas so your not one of them….

Not yet done your tax return for 2010/11?

Then get it filed today and you will not get a penalty. After today you will get an automatic penalty of £100 regardless of whether or not you owe any tax, and further daily penalties of £10 per day for each day after that.

Did you know that making a loss can be a good thing?

There are special rules for tax treatment of losses in the first years of trading, so you shouldn’t  assume that just because you aren’t making money that it is not worth completing a tax return. Apart from it being against the tax rules to be self employed and not be registered for self-assessment, you could be missing out on some money. The treatment of losses is a complex area and you should contact an accountant for advice.

Just started trading and making profits? Great!

If your profits fall below the personal allowance and you have no other income you may not pay any tax this time, but don’t forget that the first time you start to pay tax you will need to pay up front for the following year as well. The tax system operates by assuming that the following years profits will be the same as the current year and you will be required to pay the following years tax up front in two installments in January and July.

Tax Refund Scams.

Don’t respond to any emails claiming to be from HMRC and offering you a refund. You will be redirected to a false website where you are required to enter your bank details, and then your bank account will be emptied. In the last 3 months HMRC have closed down 185 false websites of this nature so this fraud is epidemic. If you think you are due a tax refund contact your accountant to check, or contact HMRC directly.

Thanks Lorraine for sharing that information – since Lorraine is the expert head over to her website (www.rightwayaccounting.co.uk) to learn more and don’t forget your accountant is there for the whole year to support your success and feed you advice and ideas to sustain and grow your business.

You can meet Lorraine at Essex BWN events.

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