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The Tax Man toughens up

Over the past 2 years, we’ve noticed a much more vigorous approach from HM Revenue & Customs in collecting business taxes. The reason behind this increased activity is undoubtedly the Treasury looking to alleviate the effect of its decreasing tax receipts by tightening its enforcement arms collection methods. The effect has been stark, in the 2010/11 tax year, HMRC issued 3,367 winding-up petitions, whilst in 2011/12 there were 5,302 issued. Extrapolating out from the activity Robson Scott has seen, I wouldn’t be surprised if that increased to almost 7,000 for this tax year. HMRC’s investigations units have been unlikely winners whilst other departments have suffered swingeing cuts. £917 million in extra funding has been promised, with the quid pro quo that the Treasury expects HMRC to generate a further £7 billion in recovery of taxes that would have otherwise remained unpaid. The main upshot from this is that official investigations into businesses and […]

Closing down your business

“It costs less than £100 to set up a limited company, but the costs of closing down can be considerably higher, especially if the wrong approach is taken!” There are three main ways of closing down a limited company, with similar procedures available for sole traders or partnerships. The way that suits you best will depend on the circumstances of your company. As there are such differences in the costs and implications between the three, it is well worth carefully examining which means of business closure before you decide. Below we examine the 3 main options. Dissolution (also known as ‘Striking off) This is applicable only if you have a company that has ceased trade for over three months and no longer has any assets. Before dissolution, your company must have already paid off all its debt – this is important, as if you dissolve a business whilst debt is still outstanding, […]

Thatcher’s legacy

Thatcher’s insolvency legislation is backbone to current business enterprise With the recent death of Margaret Thatcher, I thought it opportune to have a look back at the huge effect she had on the way we deal with insolvencies in the UK. Towards the end of 70s and the beginning of the 80s, Britain was in the grip of a recession, suffering a lack of confidence in its own business prowess, and facing a need to move away from its core raw material industries. Much wrong was done in the need to change Britain’s direction, and many communities were ripped apart in the way it was approached, especially across the North. However, when Mrs Thatcher was appointed prime minister in 1979, she also set the UK onto a path of business reform that completely changed the way businesses operate. Having loosened the grip of the unions, she also brought in new measures in line […]