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If your small business has recently suffered from financial losses arising as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, you, as company director or sole trader, may have taken advantage of the government-supported bounce back loan scheme. This may have helped you carry your business through this difficult period in order to avoid liquidation, but what if you’ve used it for other purposes? Bounce back loans offer struggling businesses up to £50,000 depending on the business' usual annual turnover, and allow a six-to-ten-year repayment term. The scheme was launched on 4th May 2020 and eligible business owners have until 31st [...]
Insolvency is a highly regulated professional service. If a firm offers “insolvency services” there must be a licensed Insolvency Practitioner (IP) within the business. Insolvency practitioners have often qualified as accountants before they specialise in insolvency. It is important that they have a good understanding of business finance. There are many firms which claim to offer insolvency services; however, some will simply charge you a fee to refer you to another company that does have a licensed IP. If you feel that you may need the help of an IP it is worth making sure that you are speaking to [...]
HMRC introduced IR35 or the ‘off-payroll working rules’ in 2000 to target ‘disguised employment’ and tax avoidance. It is aimed at companies who hire freelancers or contractors to undertake work but who are in effect working as employees. The advantage for the employer is that they don’t have to pay employers’ National lnsurance contributions or give the contractor the benefits they would have to give to an employee. The benefit for the contractor is that by setting up a limited company, they can take avoid National Insurance and pay lower rates of tax. IR35, however, is designed to assess whether [...]
If you’re an accountant or solicitor and one of your clients receives notice of a County Court Judgement or CCJ, what should you be advising them to do? Well, the first point is that they shouldn’t just ignore it. A CCJ is not simply going to go away. So it’s no good your client putting their head in the sand, hoping it will. You need to make them realise they must take urgent action. They have just 14 days to respond. What exactly is it? Explain to your client that a CCJ is a court order, issued by a county [...]
So you’re a director? It’s an impressive-sounding title, bringing with it prestige and monetary reward. You may even have cracked open the champagne when you first became one. But being a director also carries with it certain responsibilities. These become particularly significant if your business runs into financial difficulties. What do you need to be aware of? By becoming a director, you agreed to act in the best interests of the company, its shareholders, its employees and its creditors. In times of financial difficulty, however, this ‘duty of care’ starts to shift. If there is a risk of insolvency, you [...]