We have a broad variety of tax news and updates for you this week and we have been busy updating some of our core guides, which is always exciting from an editorial perspective.

SME tax news

Early birds: our Self Assessment Return: what’s new 2023/24 is essential reading for anyone filing their return for last year. That won’t be us I fear. Our wonderful much-loved tax software was migrated to an allegedly better version on the behest of our supplier and now it doesn’t work. Ho hum! Not mentioning any names. We all live with the fragility of IT. If you have tried to set up a free trial to our service recently, we're sorry but this has stopped working. Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like a free trial. I would blame the rain but apparently it’s a caching issue.

On a brighter note, the first version of our Directors’ Tax Planning Toolkit 2024/25 is out. This is packed full of tax planning ideas and tips so you can add value to your tax services.

Only a few firms have put clients in to Making Tax Digital for Self Assessment (MTDSA) pilot. New figures show that only a handful of software suppliers have reported that their products are ready for MTDSA which is due to start in 2026. There is a small incentive to join the MTDSA pilot, HMRC has now confirmed that those in the pilot scheme will not be subject to late submission penalties for missing quarterly updates during the testing phase. 

Our cases this week feature another IR35 victory for HMRC, a failed appeal against a claw back of Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme payments, and VAT on services when a supplier leaves a VAT group. We also take a closer look at the tax investigation into a takeaway. HMRC’s officers have a tough time, it took five takeaways to gather sufficient evidence of takings fraud from the aptly named ‘Cheon Fat’ restaurant.

Updating our list of tax disclosure opportunities, it appears that the 2020 Disguised Remuneration Disclosure facility is still alive and well. Thousands have yet to settle with HMRC.

Finally, we are going to be exhibiting at Accountex on May 15-16th, Do save the date, come along and say 'hello'. As a virtual firm it's great to get out and about to meet you all. 

Back soon

Nichola & the Team


Your Virtual Tax Partner®: online PRACTICAL support for accountants, tax advisers BY accountants and tax advisers.

Quick News (Freeview) 

New penalty regime applies for MTD volunteers
From April 2024, volunteers participating in the testing phase of Making Tax Digital for Income Tax, will be subject to the new penalty regime.

HMRC's transition profits calculator for basis period reform
HMRC has introduced a new calculator to help self-employed individuals determine their transition profit for 2023-24, under the basis period reform rules. 

HMRC Tax Settlement Facilities 2024-25
HMRC provides special tax settlement facilities and opportunities to allow taxpayers to notify undeclared income or gains over a range of different taxes. Facilities are provided via special links to enable taxpayers to settle unpaid taxes.

Consultation on Land Transaction Tax reliefs 
The Welsh Government has published a consultation on proposed changes to Land Transaction Tax (LTT) reliefs, which include the abolition of Multiple Dwellings Relief (MDR) from 1 June 2024.

Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC) one-to-many letters 
HMRC's recent One-To-Many letter prompts Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs) to review their eligibility for the scheme.

Tax Cases (Freeview)

COVID CJRS claim denied
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) claims were denied by the First Tier Tribunal. The claims were contrary to the exceptional purposes of the scheme.

Footballer Neil McCann loses IR35 appeal
Football pundit and former Scottish footballer and manager Neil McCann lost his appeal at the Upper Tribunal (UT) that his contract with Sky was employment.  This finding confirms liabilities to tax and NIC of over £200,000. 

Editor's Choice 

Directors' Tax Planning Toolkit 2024/25 
What tax planning opportunities and strategies are available to directors this year? What's the optimum way to extract profits and tax reliefs and tax deductions are handy to consider? This planner looks at a range of director tax issues. 

Self Assessment Return 2023/24: What's new?
Self Assessment toolkit: top tips for completing tax returns for the year ending 5 April 2024.

Freeports: LBTT Relief for Green Freeports
What are Green Freeports? Who can claim LBTT relief? What are the designated sites? 

Tax Tools & Calculators

Tax tools & calculators
UPDATE: 2024/25 versions available now. We have a suite of useful tax tools that help agents, business owners and sole traders calculate their taxes. 

Calendar of tax deadlines and new tax measures

UPDATE: This is a freeview 'At a glance' rolling calendar of common recurring tax deadlines, new tax measures and other tax-significant events. 

Guides & Updates (subscription content)


Record-keeping & tax: What, how and until when?
How long do you need to keep your books and records for tax? Record-keeping for Income Tax (IT), PAYE, Capital Gains Tax (CGT), VAT and Corporation Tax (CT). What if you lose your records? 

Basis Period reform
What is basis period reform? Who is affected? What is the new basis year for tax? What are the transitional rules? 

Losses (sideways): Restriction for uncommercial trades
What is sideways loss relief? What restrictions apply? When do they apply? What is an uncommercial trade? 


Partnerships: Capital Gains Tax
How does Capital Gains Tax (CGT) work for partners and partnerships? What is HMRC’s Statement of Practice D12? How are transactions between partners treated? What if the partners are connected persons for CGT?

Directors & Companies  

Share capital: What's an ordinary share?
What is an ordinary share? Why is it important?

Close Investment Holding Companies
When does a close company become a Close Investment Holding Company? What are the consequences?

Tax planning for income at marginal tax rates
At what levels of income do higher marginal rates of Income Tax apply? What tax planning can be undertaken? 


PAYE Settlement Agreements
What are PAYE Settlement Agreements? How do they work? What can be included? 

Vans and Commercial vehicles
What is the Benefit In Kind charge if you drive a company van? What is van fuel benefit? What is the tax on zero-emissions vans?

Private Client & Estate Planning

Investment bonds & tax
How are investment bonds taxed? What is an investment bond? What is a chargeable event gain and how is it calculated? How do notional tax credits work? How is top slicing relief calculated? What is deficiency relief?

IHT: Normal Expenditure Out of Income (gifts)
When is normal expenditure out of income exempt for Inheritance Tax (IHT)? How do you claim the exemption?

CGT: Value shifting
What is value shifting? When do the rules apply and what are the implications?

Land & Property

Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings (ATED)
What is the Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings (ATED)? Who does ATED apply to? What relief is available and how is it claimed? What are the ATED return filing dates?

National Insurance for landlords
When are National Insurance Contributions (NICs) payable by landlords? Can landlords pay Class 2 NICs voluntarily?

SDLT: First-time buyers
What Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) relief is available to first-time buyers? What qualifying conditions must be met?

Devolved Taxes

Scottish Income Tax: Am I a Scottish taxpayer?
Who does Scottish Income Tax apply to? Am I resident in Scotland? What constitutes a residence and the 'main' residence?

LBTT: Land and Buildings Transaction Tax
What is Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT)? What are the rules?

Overseas & Residence

SRT: Split Year Treatment
What is Split Year Treatment? When does it apply?

Remittance basis (overseas income)
What is the remittance basis? Who can claim it and when? What are the advantages of claiming the remittance basis and how much is the remittance basis charge? 

VAT News & Cases

VAT due on services invoiced after supplier left group
Agreeing with an earlier Upper Tribunal decision, the Court of Appeal found that VAT was due on services provided between two companies that were members of the same VAT group as the services were not invoiced or paid until after the supplier had left the group.

Lots of takeaways to make VAT discovery
HMRC's officers made five visits to a Chinese takeaway to confirm that not all the sales were recorded in the till. HMRC made assessments for VAT and a s.455 Corporation Tax charge because the director had pocketed the cash sales. On appeal to the FTT, errors were noted in HMRC's calculations which the tribunal corrected.

Registering for VAT
UPDATE: When should a business register for and charge VAT? What are the VAT registration thresholds? What penalties might HMRC issue for late notification of registration? When do you need to file a VAT return?

UPDATE: When do I have to deregister for VAT? When can I voluntarily deregister? What penalties might HMRC issue if I am late notifying them of mandatory deregistration?

CPD for Lunch

Byte-sized chunks of lunchtime CPD for subscribers

More at CPD Index

CPD Workouts

Two hours of CPD: Unravelling the diverse tax rules over a range of topical subjects

Tax Queries?

UK Agent for registration of Overseas Entities
Do you require assistance in the registration and verification of an overseas entity that owns UK land or property?

Virtual Tax Partner© Support
Have a tax query? Need a second option? Open a ticket and ask a question. A team of tax experts with a very wide range of expertise: covering direct and indirect tax, as well as accounting, R&D claims, reorganisations and much more.  

Missed Last Time's Web-update?

Nichola's SME Tax W-update 4 April 2024

  • Employer Bulletin 6: March 2024 
  • Easement for probate grant on credit 
  • Audio-Visual Expenditure Credit (AVEC) & Video Games Expenditure Credit (VGEC) 
  • Creative Industries: Additional Administrative Requirements 
  • No SEIS for fund's investors
  • Grant-funded education is an economic activity
  • Salary 2024/25 (interaction with NICs) NEW
  • Sole trader v. limited company: Tax differences & savings (2024/25) NEW...More

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