As the Government starts to tighten the COVID-19 restrictions once more, being prepared and proactive with your business planning has never been more important.
This year has been like no other, so it's well worth checking that your tax liabilities haven't increased or decreased and that you're being taxed correctly.
Have your circumstances changed or has anything occurred that would trigger a tax change, such as relocating your business or moving jobs? See the link at the end of this Blog for more information about tax codes.
As ever, keeping records is extremely important and could also save you stress and financial outlay in the longer-term.
With the Furlough Scheme winding down to be replaced by the Job Support Scheme, time will tell if this is enough support to stop thousands of small businesses folding.
The new emergency jobs scheme will be introduced to protect jobs during the COVID-19 downturn this winter, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced.
The scheme, which will replace the current furlough support when it ends on 31 October, will see workers get up to 77% of their normal salaries for six months.
The Jobs Support Scheme is designed to sit alongside the Jobs Retention Bonus and aims to stop mass job cuts after the government introduced new measures in its Winter Economy Plan to tackle coronavirus.
The Chancellor said that employees will have to be working for at least a third of their normal hours to qualify for the new scheme, which begins on 1 November.
Between them, the government and the employer will then cover part of their salary for the remaining hours not worked. The government will cover a third of this sum, capped at £697.92 per month, while firms cover a further third.
More support also comes in the form of the Job Retention Bonus, which will see businesses receive a one-off payment of £1,000 for every previously furloughed employee if they are still employed at the end of January next year.
Quite simply, in the current climate, planning ahead is a must-do - if small businesses are to survive.
New opportunities created by COVID
We've all seen stories about the businesses that adapted and changed their offering during the pandemic.
Are there fresh opportunities that you've branched into in 2020 or are planning over the coming months? How have things changed with the way that you work and do business?
From chatting to clients, I know that virtually no one has continued without having to adapt in some way and many have actively decided not to return to their previous way of doing business or working.
Many are downsizing their offices and others are moving out of London, which is an inevitable consequence of the 'new world' we now live in.
This will sadly result in putting a strain on many related small businesses like newsagents, taxi drivers and sandwich shops, that rely on an influx of workers each day to survive.
Get records up to date
Anyone who knows me will know that I am a firm believer in good record keeping.
Despite the chaos wreaked by COVID-19, you still need to ensure your records are up to date and the onus is on you to prove it if HMRC say you owe more tax than you had anticipated.
Don't leave things until the last minute and do ask for professional help if you need it.
I know that both income and corporation tax can be confusing and complex, so do make sure you understand your tax liabilities and what can be 'offset'. If you're not sure, it's worth asking your accountant.
The business world has changed in so many ways this year – are you ready for the fresh opportunities it may bring?
Why Giltinan and Kennedy?
• ensure you save on tax costs and pay competitive fees for your accounts
• provide a complete, objective, service, with the benefit of calling on our wide range of professional partners
• be proactive, ensuring we are up to date with the latest changes and legislation
• offer a fixed fee tax return service to help you budget.
Especially in these challenging times, I understand the pressures you face and I tailor my services to meet your changing needs.
As well as general accountancy and extensive tax skills, myself and another partner also have individual specialist skills which enable us to provide you with a comprehensive, first-class service.
This means that you can stop worrying about your finances and instead be reassured that your accounts and any tax work will be carried out by my qualified and experienced accountants. They will never be delegated to unqualified staff or subcontracted, as is increasingly the case with other practices.
Email me here, direct message or call me on 01403 337490 to see how we can support you.
And if you want to check your tax code you can do it here https://www.gov.uk/tax-codes.