Bates Weston Tax give tax advice to owner managers and we are delighted to welcome Liz Pepper to our growing tax advisory team. We’ve had quite a year. Major decisions, especially for owner managers, have far reaching impacts and we see it as our job to help them take the big decisions with confidence. This year, perhaps more than ever, they have needed our help.
Most owner managers expect tax planning to help them in the long term, but it has its role to play in the short term too. During 2020 we have helped business owners to recover cash from HMRC to help with cashflow, setting losses against previous year profits to generate Corporation Tax (CT) refunds, using all available reliefs to minimise profits and CT bills for the current year and retrospectively, and in particular checking R & D reliefs as they can potentially generate cash back credits. A watchful eye needs to be kept on trading status too as valuable Capital Gains and Inheritance tax reliefs available to shareholders, are partly dependent on whether the company is considered to be a trading or an investment company.
Covid-19 has also prompted many to review their business structure and longer term plans. There may be are advantages to splitting up a company, separating the higher risk elements from those that are performing well or separating investment activities from trade. But it has to be done carefully, involving expert tax advice to avoid triggering unexpected tax liabilities.
Business owners may want to protect the cash, property and assets built up within a business – without triggering unnecessary tax, find ways to attract and keep key people when cash incentives may not be an option, pay director/shareholders tax efficiently, or plan their exit from the business. All of these goals involve exploring options fully with professional tax advisors like ourselves.
The government recently published proposals requiring that anyone providing tax advice commercially should belong to a professional body, such as the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) or the Institute of Chartered accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW). Astonishing as it may seem, providing tax advice is unregulated. Our own team tax team, led by Craig Simpson are all members of the required professional bodies.
Indeed, this year our specialist tax planning skills have been recognised by Tolley’s* as they asked our team, led by Craig Simpson, and co-authored by Richard Coombs and Cassandra Graham to write Tolley’s Tax Planning for Owner-managed Businesses 2020-21 (part of the Tolley’s Tax Planning Series).
Additionally Craig is the consultant editor for the OMB module on Tolley Guidance and Cass is a member of the CIOT Owner Managed Business Committee, which gives OMBs a voice in reviewing legislation and responding to government consultation documents.
Richard, as well as championing the owner manager’s perspective, leads our response to the Loan Charge and pursuing R & D reliefs.
Craig comments on the year so far and the arrival of the newest member of our team:
“In a tumultuous year, our clients have been able to rely on us for practical help. We understand how important their businesses are to themselves and their dependents, the short term challenges they face and their long term goals, and they know we have the expertise to help them. If you own a business, we are the right people to talk to.”
“We are delighted to welcome Liz to our team. She has the same approach as we all do. She knows it’s about really understanding the clients, explaining their options clearly in a jargon free way, having the skills and expertise to help and the drive to make a difference.”
*Tolley’s are the UK market leader in providing practical tax and accountancy guidance, in-depth reference materials, exam training and exclusive market insights.