Covid-19

Changes to ADR process announced by HMRC

HMRC have made important changes to the way it operates the Alternative Dispute Resolution process. The recent changes to the tribunal rules mean that we can now consider Alternative Dispute Resolution applications at any stage of the process up to the date of the tribunal. In an email to agents HMRC said: “We are also changing the way we carry

Read more

Read more

No formal inquiry into huge hikes in overdraft fees

Banks will not face an enquiry from the UK’s financial watchdog into their controversial decision to hike overdraft fees by as much as 40%. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said it would undertake a full evaluation of lenders’ pricing structures in 2021. In January, the FCA challenged the banks to explain the changes to their overdraft rates that would leave

Read more

Read more

Flexible furlough scheme now up and running

UK businesses are now able to bring furloughed staff back to work part time as part of the government’s plan to kickstart the economy. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) has helped protect more than 9.3 million jobs through the pandemic, with employers claiming more than £25.5 billion to support wages. The change to the rules came into force on

Read more

Read more

Almost half of UK firms anticipate more job losses

Some 42% of UK companies say they will be forced to lay off staff because of the Covid-19 pandemic. A YouGov survey found that more than two-fifths expect they will have fewer employees in a year’s time compared with pre-lockdown numbers. Just 16% of companies surveyed expect to employ more people in a year’s time than before lockdown. Sectors most

Read more

Read more

Almost three million people claiming work-related benefits

The number of people out of work and claiming work-related benefits in the UK jumped 23% to 2.8 million in May. In March, at the beginning of the Covid-19 lockdown, the figure was 1.24 million, representing a 126% increase. The Office for National Statistics said its May claimant figures were included in the unemployment data to give a more up-to-date

Read more

Read more

Visa publishes survival guide as small businesses fear for futures

More than half (56%) of small business owners are concerned they will not be able to bounce back from the impact of Covid-19, according to a new survey by Visa. Consumers are also having similar worries. Seven in 10 (73%) surveyed worried about small businesses reopening. One in two shoppers (54%) will only return to ‘bricks and mortar’ stores if

Read more

Read more

HMRC Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is changing.

The government is committed to doing whatever it takes to support businesses and individuals through the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The following updated webinars have information, guidance and tips to help you to support your clients. From 1‌‌ July 2020, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is changing. Employers will be able to bring previously furloughed employees back to work part time and

Read more

Read more

SMEs handcuffed by social distancing requirements

Many of the UK’s SMEs will struggle to trade if social distancing measures continue, according to the latest ACCA UK/Corporate Finance Network (CFN) SME Health Tracker. Its survey of accountants representing nearly 9,000 SMEs across the UK found that 16% of SMEs said they think social distancing will make it impossible or unviable to reopen their business – around 1,500

Read more

Read more

HMRC fails to hit own ‘customer service’ targets

Waiting times on HMRC’s helplines grew by 25% in the first quarter of the year, with the latest figures showing that the Revenue’s performance had worsened even before the Covid-19 pandemic hit the UK. HMRC’s own figures show that the average call waiting time in the first quarter of 2020 was more than six minutes, a minute-and-a-half longer than in

Read more

Read more