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Financial matters and news of note for the first quarter of 2020

12 February 2020

After Brexit dominated the latter end of the decade, we have an additional focus on the near horizon in 2020 with the new government’s Budget less than six weeks away.
The election campaign featured a number of promises where tax rises would not occur – the ‘triple lock’ safeguarding income tax, VAT and NICs. Corporation taxes are being kept at 19% (the reduction to 17% being scrapped pre-election).  That is quite a list of taxes that we are told will not change, hence this does rather beg the question as to where the funds will be raised for the proposed spending plans.

As usual with year end tax, some reliefs and allowance will be lost if you do not take advantage of them by 6 April 2020.

Green governance for business is likely to remain a big theme with climate change rising to new levels of prominence by the end of 2019. There will be increasing pressure from government, clients and employees for businesses to become more environmentally responsible through green travel schemes, ethically invested funds, and the use of plastic and green products from supplier chains.

Meanwhile, reported losses to business from fraud and scams are on the rise with nearly 60,000 cases reported in 2018/19. Examples include employee misuse of corporate cards and claiming false business expenses, as well as organised payroll scams. Employers may reduce their vulnerability to fraud by fostering a loyal environment for whistle-blowers to come forward without fear of reprisals.

Entrepreneurs’ relief is widely reported as being a likely area that is to be reviewed, hence we will be keeping a close eye on developments.  If you were contemplating a sale or disposal where this relief was anticipated, please let us know.

In this issue we will also take a look at:

  • What’s coming in the new government’s tax plans?
  • Relief restriction on corporate capital losses
  • The new parental bereavement leave coming in from April
  • Honest mistakes taxpayers need to beware of

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