FAQs About Accountancy

How easy it is to change accountants?
Switching accountants is easy and straight-forward. It’s usually a case of simply writing to your current accountant, telling them the name of your new accountants and advising them that the new firm will be contacting them shortly to collect your records.

When you decide to switch to us, we will fully manage the transition and ensure that the handover is seamless. We will take care of everything including contacting your current accountant and explaining you are moving away, drafting a brief note confirming the move, arranging for the transfer of records, obtaining copies of your accounts and tax computations, and notifying HMRC and other government offices that we are looking after your business affairs.

 

What information is needed to receive a quote and advice?
Firstly, to get a feel of the amount of work involved, we’d need a very brief review of your books and records. Additionally, we’d need a copy of your last financial accounts prepared by your current accountant to provide relevant advice. If there’s anything you need help with and think it’s relevant for us to know, please contact us.

 

What are the deadlines for Personal Tax /Self-assessment return filing?
Under self-assessment, a paper return must reach HMRC by 31st October and an online return by 31st January. If you fail to file the return, you automatically receive a £100 fine – even if you don’t owe any tax or have paid the tax you owe. If, for whatever reason, you miss the deadline, the longer you delay the more you pay.

We examine every client’s individual circumstances closely and suggest planning well in advance so that you pay only as much as you have to and don’t incur a fine.

 

What are the deadlines for Corporation Tax return filing?
The deadline for filing your corporation tax return is within 12 months of the end of your company’s corporation tax accounting period. Yearly filing would include the submission of your company tax return form and other supporting documentation. If you fail to file your return on time your company will be charged an automatic penalty, even if it does not owe any corporation tax.

Keeping the above in mind, your actual payment deadline can vary depending on how much taxable profit your company or organisation makes. This is determined by many factors including the amount of your taxable profits and whether you operate a group of companies. It pays to complete your tax return well in advance. We recommend that you contact our offices so that we can examine and plan your return in plenty of time.

 

How long do I have before I register with HMRC once I start trading?
You must notify HMRC within 3 months to avoid a £100 penalty. If you’re approaching this deadline then contact us and we will help you get the form in on time.

 

What’s the difference between management accounting and what my accountant does at the end of the year?

Your financial accountant is there to keep the Inland Revenue and any external stakeholders happy by recording financial information at the end of the year. A financial accountant focuses on tax. A management accountant, on the other hand, is there to help you throughout the year by regularly providing you with useful information that will enable you to make good decisions and optimise your company’s performance.

What is corporation tax?

This is tax paid by UK companies (with some exceptions) on ‘chargeable profits’. Rates are fixed each year by the government.

What is a limited liability (Ltd) company?
It is a separate legal entity, a company whose shareholders have limited their liability to the value of the shares they hold.

What is a partnership?

This is when two or more people agree to carry on a business together intending to share profits.

What is a sole trader?

This is the simplest type of business. There are no shareholders, just the owner’s money and borrowings. A sole trader may also be known as a sole proprietor.

Why should I use you rather than someone providing a bookkeeping service in their spare time?

With us you get bookkeeping with a management accountant’s eye – so you get advice, insights and training that you wouldn’t normally get from a bookkeeper. You also get the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re dealing with a company that has professional indemnity insurance and will be able to appreciate the bigger picture of your business.

Why should I get you to do the bookkeeping when I or one of my staff can do it?

If you enjoy doing the bookkeeping or already have staff who can do it, that’s fine. But bear in mind that we can also provide cover when people are sick or on holiday, and we can help out during peak periods. If you’d rather be doing something more profitable with your time than bookkeeping or are thinking of employing someone to do it, perhaps you should consider us. It’s a much more flexible arrangement for you than having an employee. And we can really add value as well.

How much will your service cost me?

That really depends on exactly what you want us to do. Rest assured that our service is cost-effective. You will generally either end up saving money (by paying less to your accountant at the end of the year) or freeing yourself up to focus on your customers, turnover and profit.

How do you transfer paperwork and information?

This depends on your location and requirement but we have successfully used email, post, or arranged to meet customers at a mutually convenient time and place.

What does ACCA mean?

This is the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. It is an internationally recognised professional accounting qualification. This can only be attained following the successful completion of 14 professional examinations. To become a full member of the ACCA, you have to have completed at least 3 years of relevant practical experience in many areas of general practice.