For those of us with young children, or those yet to grow up Halloween marks the chance to indulge in trick-or-treating, carving of pumpkins, fancy dress, firework displays and lest we forget the history behind this time of year remembering the dead.
For those of us working in the personal tax world though the 31 October has other significance, it marks the last day on which you can file a paper self-assessment tax return with HM Revenue & Customs for the 2014/15 tax year.
The RPA are sending Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) leaflets to farmers informing them of what to expect in the next few months.
It confirms that it will announce the BPS values in November 2015 and gives an indication of when they will make payments. The aim is to pay the majority of farmers in December 2015 and January 2016, and if payments are likely to be later than this they will confirm the reasons why.
Farmers should keep an eye out in the post for the leaflet, as it is a reminder that if bank details have recently changed then the RPA must be notified.
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One of the topics discussed at our recent series of Trustee workshops was the changes that are taking place to the annual return which is submitted on line to the Charity Commission. Charities with gross income of less than £10,000pa will be asked to file an update form.
All charities with gross income over £10,000pa must file an annual return online. The annual return together with the accounts must be filed within 10 months of the accounting year end. Failure to file within the 10 month period results in an entry against the Charities record on the Charity Commission website.
Two of the South West’s leading independent accountancy practices have announced they are merging to create a new South West regional firm.
Thomas Westcott will join forces with Butterworth Jones to create a combined business with 24 partners and 190 staff across 18 offices in Devon and Somerset.
Devon-based Thomas Westcott is an established practice with offices across the county providing services including accountancy, audit, business recovery, corporate finance, financial planning and tax advice.
Somerset-based Butterworth Jones, founded almost 100 years ago, has five offices in Bridgwater, Burnham-on-Sea, Langport, Somerton and Weston-super-Mare.
Richard Thomas, Chairman of Thomas Westcott, said: “The merger is the ideal coming together for us and our clients as we continue to build a full-service accountancy business delivering first-class proactive support that adds real value to our clients.”
He added: “Butterworth Jones is a well-established and successful accountancy firm and we believe the two firms’ highly-complementary service offerings will significantly strengthen our overall market position in the South West and beyond.”
John Parker, Managing partner of Butterworth Jones, said: “A key advantage of this merger will be our ability to broaden the portfolio of services available to clients.
“Over almost a century we have provided high quality accountancy services and joining forces with Thomas Westcott will only enhance our reputation and create huge opportunities both for the business and our clients.”
He added: “Our hallmark is to deliver specialist services across a range of sectors through local offices.”
More than £4,000 was raised at a charity golf day held in aid of South West Multiple Sclerosis Centre.
The event, sponsored by Thomas Westcott Chartered Accountants and Thomas Westcott Business Recovery, saw 22 teams of four, made up of professional contacts and clients, battle it out at Teignmouth Golf Club.
In all £4,100 was raised through a combination of entry fees, fun golf-themed events, raffles and an auction.
As in previous years all the money was donated to the South West MS Centre in Clyst Heath, Exeter.
Tom Hughes-Parry (1949-2015)
It is with great sadness that the partners announce the death of our former partner Tom Hughes-Parry FCA, after a lengthy illness that he fought bravely and uncomplainingly for the past two years. He passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his wife Rosemary and their sons Thomas and Phillip.
Tom joined Beer Aplin on 2 November 1978 having served his articles at Harmood Banner and working after qualification in the Investigation Department of Deloitte Haskins & Sells. He was appointed as a partner on 1 May 1979 and after the merger retired as a partner of Thomas Westcott on 30 April 2006.
Tom was well respected as an accountant by the business community of Exeter and his peers in the other professions. His work in the Charity and Not for Profit sector was extensive, holding many honorary positions including initially as Secretary to the governors and then as Trustee of the Exeter Royal Academy for Deaf Education.
At Thomas Westcott Business Recovery, one of the most important initial steps in any Liquidation or Administration is to make sure that employees are looked after as efficiently and empathetically as possible.
You may have just received notification that your employer is soon to be placed into Liquidation or Administration. This is often a time of worry and panic for many. How are you going to pay the mortgage, pay your credit card bill or feed the family? There are a few practical tips you should consider in these circumstances:
Several Thomas Westcott representatives attended the ICAEW Business Futures event in Coventry on Friday, they are pictured above with ICAEW President Andrew Ratcliffee. The interactive event considered the way in which businesses will need to continue to adapt in order to deal with the future. Topics were introduced by leading expert speakers across a range of subjects including energy and resources, financial markets, architecture and design and fashion.
The event closed with an uplifting key note address by Professor Brian Cox who gave his view on resourcing future energy needs, life beyond Planet Earth and the universe before the Big Bang. Professor Cox related his topics to business in the future and what life will be like on Planet Earth in thirty five years time.
In recent months, the Charity Commission have published reports following the conclusion of a number of statutory inquiries, many of which have been in respect of charities that have failed to file accounts for two consecutive years, these are known as double defaulter charities.
The published reports give brief details as to why accounts had not been filed and the reasons (or excuses) given by the trustees for their failings. It is important to note that a failure to file accounts is always due to the failings of trustees and is a criminal offence. Any new trustee assumes a responsibility to rectify the failings of the past as soon as they take on the role.
For many years small companies have been able to take advantage of the option to file abbreviated accounts at Companies House, thereby keeping to a minimum the information they put into the public domain about them. All this is about to change!
Effective from accounting periods commencing on or after 1 January 2016 this option is removed from company law. So what filing options will be available to small companies in the future?
Generally speaking, small companies will be required to file the version of the accounts that they prepare for their shareholders. They will, however, still have the option not to file the profit and loss account and/or the directors’ report at Companies House – although this does mean that more of the notes to the accounts are likely to have to be filed than at present.
Are there any other options available? Well, yes.