How To Limit Your Stress This Tax Return Deadline – Take control of your clients

International Association of Bookkeepers

Dreading January? As an accountant to self-employed sole traders, we’re going to guess that’s a yes – unless you’ve managed to file your clients Self-Assessment tax returns already… hats off to you if you have!

Getting this monumental task completed early is no mean feat. But it is possible to get through the tax season without experiencing a stressful sprint to 31st January.

Here, Mike Parkes from GoSimpleTax explains how.

Gather all information soon
Don’t delay get the required data together off your clients now. Make a checklist such as the one below to ensure you have everything avoiding unnecessary delays. This aids you and your client if shared and updated between you.

Documents and Information Checklist. (suggested format)

Documents/InformationReceivedClient to send
National Insurance Number
Unique Taxpayer Reference number or UTR
Business/partnership name, address and company number if relevant
P45
P60
P11D
The business’s annual income and expenditure
Income earned from other employment
Any rent they have received
Interest paid on loans, credit cards or other credit
Income from overseas
Income received from a partnership
Any dividends received
Benefits received either from the state or an employer
Capital gains received
Gift Aid received
Pension contributions
Tax payments they have already made this year (payments on account)

Be sure to have yourself registered with the 64-8 form for new clients, to be officially recognised as their agent by HMRC so you can act on their behalf.

Remind your clients of what is required

You have shared your checklist of standard data required, but you may require extra information.

Perhaps your client has a student loan. Maybe your client (or their partner) are claiming Child Benefit. If there’s the slightest possibility your clients circumstances will affect how much tax they need to pay, you should be aware.

Make clients aware of possible penalties

Submitting the Self-Assessment late comes with penalties, so make sure your clients are aware of these and know how you will need to provide all the necessary data to ensure they avoid them.

Minimise errors with tax software

The chances of any mistakes can be reduced through Self-Assessment tax return software. It will take all the administrative work off your hands, ensuring the numbers are correct. Your client can also see their tax liability in real time, which should be an incentive not to leave it to the last minute!

Think ahead for Making Tax Digital – HMRC will not continue to maintain their own software

With MTD over the horizon begin converting your clients to a software such as GoSimpleTax and utilise their income tax calculator and submission tool for your clients business. Giving them full visibility of your tax liability in real time whilst giving and reviewing your pension contributions and investment opportunities.

About GoSimpleTax

GoSimpleTax is a secure cloud-based solution and it is officially- recognised by HMRC.

It includes partnership, non-resident and previous year returns.  it has an easy to use interface and submits direct HMRC. GoSimpleTax are ready for MTD and the software shows the Tax liability in real time.  It has a simple dashboard allowing you to switch between clients easily.

IAB members now receive a 25% discount on GoSimpleTax to receive your discount code sign-up here (example 100 client submissions £187.50inc using discount)

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