Tax Diary June/July 2021

1 June 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 August 2020.

19 June 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 June 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 June 2021)

19 June 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 June 2021.

19 June 2021 – CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 June 2021 is payable by today.

1 July 2021 – Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 September 2020.

6 July 2021 – Complete and submit forms P11D return of benefits and expenses and P11D(b) return of Class 1A NICs.

19 July 2021 – Pay Class 1A NICs (by the 22 July 2021 if paid electronically).

19 July 2021 – PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 July 2021. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 July 2021)

19 July 2021 – Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 July 2021.

19 July 2021 – CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 July 2021 is payable by today.

Encourage staff to get the COVID-19 vaccine

The government is calling on all employers to make a commitment to help employees get the COVID-19 vaccine, including during working hours, to drive vaccine uptake across the UK. To support this, the government has produced a toolkit so that employers can run their own internal awareness campaigns to promote the benefits of vaccination.

The toolkit can be downloaded as a zip folder and it comprises an employer briefing sheet, a vaccine fact sheet, posters, question and answer videos, web banners and other resources so that employers can ensure their employees get access to reliable and accurate information about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Tariff suspension on certain imports

The UK government has announced plans to introduce a new tariff suspension scheme. This new scheme will help UK firms become globally competitive.

This will be done by allowing companies to request that duties be partially or wholly reduced for a set period. This in turn will result in lowering the cost of importing raw materials and decreasing production costs. Once a suspension has been introduced, all UK importers will be able to benefit from the reduced rate.

The new scheme will be launched from 1 June 2021 and will allocate suspensions based on the needs of firms in the UK and the wider economy. Prior to Brexit, firms had to submit applications to the EU bloc to request suspensions, which then had to be assessed by all member states.

The government has also confirmed that existing duty suspensions that the government has rolled over from the EU will be extended beyond 31 December 2021.

Tax on sale of cryptoassets

Most individuals hold cryptoassets (such as Bitcoin) as a personal investment, usually for capital appreciation in its value or to make purchases. 

HMRC is clear that these holdings will usually be subject to Capital Gains Tax (CGT) when: 

  • selling tokens
  • exchanging tokens for a different type of cryptoasset
  • using tokens to pay for goods or services
  • giving away tokens to another person (unless it is a gift to your spouse or civil partner)
  • donating coins to charity 

To check if you need to pay CGT, you will need to work out your gain for each transaction. The way a gain is calculated is different if you sell tokens within 30 days of buying them. If the asset was acquired free of charge, then the market value at the time should be used to calculate the gain. 

Taxpayers can deduct certain allowable costs when working out their gain, including the cost of:

  • transaction fees paid before the transaction is added to a blockchain
  • advertising for a buyer or seller
  • drawing up a contract for the transaction
  • making a valuation so they can work out the gain for that transaction

If the taxpayer’s activity is trading, then Income Tax will take priority over CGT and will apply to profits (or losses). 

Employment Status Tool

HMRC’s employment status service can be used to help ascertain if a worker should be classified as employed or self-employed for tax purposes in both the private and public sector. The service has recently been updated to reflect off-payroll working changes that came into effect on 6 April 2021.

The service provides HMRC’s view as to whether IR35 legislation applies to a particular engagement and whether a worker should pay tax through PAYE as well as helping to determine if the off-payroll working in the public sector rules apply to a public sector engagement.

The software can be used to check the employment status of:

  • a worker providing services;
  • a person or organisation hiring a worker; or
  • an agency placing a worker.

HMRC has said that it will stand by the result given unless a compliance check finds the information provided was not accurate. HMRC will not stand by the results of contrived arrangements designed to achieve a particular outcome. HMRC are clear that this would be treated as evidence of deliberate non-compliance and could result in higher penalties.

The service is anonymous, and the results are not stored online. However, the results can be printed and held for your own records. If any changes take place to the workers role their status should be reassessed.

Check if you can claim working from home expenses

If you are an employee who is working from home, you may be able to claim tax relief for some of the bills you pay that are related to your work. 

Note that if an employee is working at home voluntarily, they cannot claim tax relief. However, these tax reliefs are available to anyone who has been asked to work from home due to the COVID-19 outbreak. HMRC received more than 3 million claims for the tax relief for the 2020-21 tax year and has also confirmed that the tax relief will continue to be available in the current 2021-22 tax year.

HMRC’s Director General for Customer Services, recently commented that:

'Half a million people have already reduced their Income Tax this year by up to £125, by claiming tax relief on their working from home expenses.'

Employers may reimburse employees for the additional household expenses incurred by working at home. The relief covers expenses such as business telephone calls or heating and lighting costs for the room in which you are working. Expenses that are for private and business use (such as broadband) cannot be claimed. Employees may also claim tax relief on equipment purchased to facilitate working at home such as a laptop, chair or mobile phone.

Employers can pay up to £6 per week (or £26 a month for employees paid monthly) to cover an employee’s additional costs if they must work from home. Employees do not need to keep any specific records if they receive this fixed amount. 

If the expenses or allowances are not paid by the employer, then the employee can claim tax relief directly from HMRC. Employees will get tax relief based on their highest tax rate. For example, if they pay the 20% basic rate of tax and claim tax relief on £6 a week, they will get £1.20 per week in tax relief (20% of £6). Higher rate taxpayers would receive £2.40 a week (40% of £6). Employees can claim more than the quoted amount but will need to provide evidence to HMRC. 

One month left to join VAT Deferral Payment Scheme

Businesses that deferred VAT payments last year have until 21 June 2021 to join the new online payment scheme. This would allow them to spread the cost of repayment over a number of months. The VAT deferral scheme is open to businesses that took the option to defer the payment of their VAT liabilities between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020. 

Under the scheme, businesses have the option to pay their deferred VAT in smaller payments over a longer period and interest free. Instead of having to repay the full amount by 31 March 2021, businesses can make smaller interest-free payments during the 2021-22 financial year and complete payment of any arrears by 31 March 2022. 

The maximum number of instalments allowed under the scheme is based on the date businesses sign up for the scheme. The first instalment must be paid on joining the scheme. The March, April and May joining dates have passed but businesses that join by 21 June 2021 (the last available date) can pay in eight instalments.

Businesses must also meet certain conditions to use the scheme including being up to date with their VAT returns. HMRC has confirmed that businesses may be charged a 5% penalty or interest if they do not pay the VAT in full, sign up to the scheme or arrange to pay by 30 June 2021.

How to claim tax relief on employment expenses

If you are an employee that needs to buy substantial equipment to use as part of your employment you may be able to claim tax relief. In most cases you can claim tax relief on the full cost of this type of equipment. Tax relief is reduced if your employer provides a contribution towards buying the item.

The way to claim tax relief depends on the amount you are claiming. HMRC provides the following information on making a claim:

Claims up to £2,500

You can make your claim:

  • Using a Self-Assessment tax return if you already fill one in.
  • By using HMRC’s online service or by printing and posting form P87 if you do not already fill in a tax return.
  • By phone if you have had a successful claim in a previous year and your expenses are less than £1,000 (or £2,500 for professional fees and subscriptions).

Claims over £2,500

  • You can only claim using a Self-Assessment tax return. You will need to register if necessary.

There are different rules if you are an employee using your own uniforms, work clothing and tools for work. You cannot make claim relief on the initial cost of buying small tools or clothing for work. However, it is possible to claim for the cost of repairing or replacing small tools you need to do your job (for example, scissors or an electric drill), or cleaning, repairing or replacing specialist clothing (for example, a uniform or safety boots). A claim for valid purchases can be made against receipts or as a 'flat rate deduction'. 

You have four years from the end of the tax year to make a claim. This means that there is a deadline of 5 April 2022 for making a claim dating back to the 2017-18 tax year. 

Free advisory data protection check-ups and free online training on cyber security

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has published a new blog about free advisory check-ups that it is offering to help small businesses make the best use of their personal data. Small organisations, including small businesses, small groups/clubs and sole traders, can apply for an informal session of up to two hours where they will work with a member of the ICO’s SME team to complete a health check of their practices. At the end, they will receive a brief report setting out what they need to do to handle data more effectively as their business grows. Small organisations can apply for a check-up by completing an online form, and they will then be contacted by the ICO if their request can be progressed.

In addition, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has announced that it is offering new free online training for small organisations, particularly aimed at those that do not have an IT department or technical staff responsible for cyber security. The training will guide businesses through the actions they need to take to reduce the likelihood of common cyber-attacks. The training demonstrates how businesses can improve their resilience, and covers five key areas:

  • backing up data correctly
  • protecting the business against malware
  • keeping the devices used by employees secure
  • the importance of creating strong passwords
  • defending the business against phishing.

Acas publishes new advice on long COVID

Acas has published new advice for both employers and workers on the treatment of workers who are suffering from the prolonged effects of a COVID-19 infection, now widely known as long COVID. 

Acas advice is that employers and workers should discuss the impacts of long COVID as early as possible after diagnosis and then work together to find ways to help support workers who are suffering from it. The advice also states that the usual rules for sickness absence and sick pay apply when someone is off work because of long COVID, and that the options available to employers to help their staff return to work include:

  • arranging and offering occupational health assessments
  • exploring reasonable adjustments, which can vary from changed working hours to adapted physical work spaces
  • discussing flexible working as an option as well as a phased return, which may mean the worker coming back part-time initially to build back up to working their normal hours.

The advice also provides information on whether long COVID is to be treated as a disability and avoiding discrimination.