Are you one of 1.5 Million employees affected?

Good news and bad news! From Morris and Co

An audit carried out by a Treasury department has huge blunders in the calculation of tax owed under the PAYE system which means that 1.5 million employees have paid too little tax amounting to an average tax bill of £1,400 each. HMRC was also found to have over deducted tax from 4.3 million employees which averages out at a tax refund of £400 each.
HMRC have announced that letters will be issued to those employees affected by this incompetence between now and Christmas with tax refunds paid by cheque and tax owed collected via the PAYE system by adjusting individual tax codes.

The HMRC tax error could hit those on average earnings hard as a £1,400 deduction in NET pay taken over a tax year would amount to a deduction of £116 per month.
If you are in receipt of a tax demand then the best strategy is to do your own calculations as HRMC is likely to get it wrong again for many people. Even if the calculation does appear to be correct then still appeal the decision, stipulating your personal circumstances which may result in the tax debt being written off.

If you would like Morris & Co to look into your tax demand or even check over your PAYE figures for the tax year (2009/10) then our Payroll Bureau would be more than happy to confirm if you have paid the correct amount of tax against your earnings.

Please contact by email or phone 0151 348 8430 and ask to speak to Allan Jones – Payroll Supervisor who will be able to assist you.

Morris and Co.

Help and Advice from Fellow Members

The Knowledge Centre is a resource for Business Network Chester members produced by its members.

Any members are welcome to submit business articles of interest to fellow members – just contact Tracy.

‘Resident’ member contributors are:

Finance – Desirie Lea, Morris & Co
Internet and Social Networking – Andy Wooles, WSI

7 Top Tips for Online Business Networking

Presented by Andy Wooles of WSI Internet Marketing, 17/8/10

“Conversations among the members of your marketplace happen whether you like it or not.

Good marketing encourages the right sort of conversations“…..Seth Godin.

The key to successful participation in any social media marketing is to do so genuinely, to value relationships and not to take goodwill for granted. So, what are some of the best social media marketing techniques that can work for your business ?

Here is a short list of seven top tips on using Social Media to promote your business.

1. Be There – Take Part

With over 400 million Facebook users and 1.5 million businesses with Facebook  Pages, your clients and prospects are already there!

Invest time in understanding how social media is being used in your marketplace by prospects, clients and competitors.

2. Look Good

First impressions count online.

Customise profiles etc to reflect corporate branding and useful professional profile images.

3. Give to Gain

The mantra of good business networking.

Contribute to Groups, answer questions, share knowledge. Will raise your credibility and visibility.

Give value, quality before quantity.

4. Give Value

Don’t flood your network with information

They prefer quality to quantity

5. Build Quality Relationships

Build an online network you can rely upon – nurture contacts.

Don’t agree to every anonymous connection request.

Quality, not quantity.

6. Listen

Two eyes, one keyboard!

What are people saying about your brand, company, market? Then start a conversation.

7. Be Nice

Be helpful, positive, professional.

Be accountable.

Never forget, you are representing your business and yourself.

Are you interested in learning more about using Social Networking for Business?

Call Andy on 01928 787026, or why not attend his next workshop on September 14th – more details here.

It’s all a question of timing ………

Capital allowances rates to decrease from April 2012

 In the last year or so I have been finding that many of my clients have been fortunate enough to be riding out the recession and have been either investing heavily in capital equipment or carrying out major capital refurbishment on their premises.  As a result they have been able to take advantage of the tax savings currently available.  With this in mind I thought I would give some guidance on the changes that will be occurring over the next eighteen months or so.

 Annual Investment Allowance (AIA)

Since its introduction in April 2008 most businesses, regardless of size, have been able to claim an Annual Investment Allowance (AIA) on qualifying plant and machinery. This includes expenditure on commercial vehicles (not cars) and may also apply to replacement expenditure on certain fixtures in buildings (integral features), such as air conditioning and rewiring, where more than 50% in cost terms of the asset is replaced.

It was set at £50,000 on its introduction and increased to £100,000 from April 2010.  In April 2012 the AIA will be reduced down to £25,000. Businesses should be considering their capital expenditure to maximise the Annual Investment Allowance available to them over the next two years.  With the rate of Corporation tax reducing in April 2011 some companies may prefer to bring forward expenditure prior to this date to maximise further tax savings.

Many businesses will have an accounting/chargeable period that spans 1 or 6 April (6 April for sole traders and partnerships), so the AIA will have to be calculated pro rata for the period before and after the increase.

 For a company that prepares its accounts for the year ended 31 December 2010, the maximum AIA available for the period overall would be £87,500. This is computed as 3/12 x £50,000 (£12,500) + 9/12 x £100,000 (£75,000). To ensure the full potential of this relief is achieved the company will need to get the timing of the expenditure right. Only £50,000 can be allocated to expenditure before 1 April 2010 (6 April for individuals in business).

 The maximum AIA is tabulated below, assuming the transitional rules are applied as before when the AIA was introduced or increased:

Year end AIA
30/06/2010 £62,500
30/09/2010 £75,000
31/12/2010 £87,500
between 31/3/2011 and 31/3/2012 £100,000
30/06/2012 £81,250
30/09/2012 £62,500
31/12/2012 £43,750
31/03/2013 £25,000

 Where qualifying expenditure does exceed the AIA available, the balance from April 2010 only qualifies for Writing Down Allowance (WDA). This is 20% for the general plant pool and 10% for the ‘special rate’ pool which includes integral features of a building.


Both ABC Ltd and DEF Ltd make up accounts to 31 December 2010. They each have £87,500 AIA available.

 ABC Ltd intends to buy plant for £80,000 on 1 September 2010. As this expenditure post dates the increase but does not exceed the overall amount available for the accounts period – 100% tax relief is available on the whole £80,000.

 DEF Ltd has also spent £80,000 on qualifying plant. £60,000 was expended on integral features in March 2010 and £20,000 in May 2010. Only £50,000 of the expenditure incurred before 1 April 2010 will qualify for 100% relief. As the £10,000 excess relates to an integral feature only a 10% WDA of £1,000 is available. The £20,000 incurred in May 2010 will qualify for full AIA. This provides £71,000 allowances overall.

 The WDA’s available are also set to decrease from April 2012.  The main plant and machinery writing down allowances will reduce to 18% p.a. and the ‘special rate’ plant writing down allowances will reduce to 8%.

 It is important to ensure that you take advantage of any planning opportunities and I would be very happy to discuss what strategies may be appropriate in your circumstances. 

 Feel free to give me a ring on 0151 678 7979.

Desirea Lea

Grant news from Desirie Lea of Morris and Co…..

Grants are available to businesses employing up to 10 with a turnover of less than £500k trading in Chester,  Ellesmere Port, Northwich and Winsford. 

 Grants are discretionary and are designed to support existing businesses with viable projects, where grant funding will directly enable recruitment. Funding available up to a maximum of £5,000 dependent on merit, amount of funding made available will be at the discretion of the grants panel.                                              

Applications will be taken until 4 October 2010, or until the funds are fully allocated.

Please contact Desirie Lea on 0151 348 8400 for more details.

Small Loans for Business

Just received this document from North West Regional Development Agency which may be of interest and help some businesses.

Small Loans for Business