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Making Tax Digital – First phase introduced in April 2019.

Making Tax Digital for Norfolk

HMRC has announced its plans to “Make Tax Digital”, and the first phase of the process will be introduced in April 2019

What does ‘Making Tax Digital’ mean?

Tax returns, including VAT returns are currently completed and filed online, and this project is hailed as the next step to make UK individual and business tax even more digital, and automated. HMRC will require businesses to use functional compatible software, such as cloud accounting software like Xero, Sage and QuickBooks to report income and expenses in as near real-time, as possible.

As at May 2018 HMRC confirms that small businesses can use spreadsheets to record tax information, but you will need bridging software to upload it and be linked digitally to HMRC.

VAT filing from April 2019

The first tax to be using the MTD process will be VAT, with companies, sole traders, partnerships etc. that meet the VAT threshold of £85,000 being required to submit their VAT returns digitally from April 2019. There will be a “soft landing” period of 12 months where no financial penalties will be issued as we all get used to complying with the changes.

Only accounting and bookkeeping software that is HMRC approved and on their list should be used and all the big names are expected to modify their software to comply with HMRC IT requirements.

Under the new digital tax regime businesses will be required to keep a digital record of all their sales broken down by the VAT liability they attract (zero-rated, standard-rated etc.). They will also have to break down the purchases they make by VAT and retain information about the adjustments made for reverse charges on imported services, car leasing and business entertainment.

There is currently no mandatory requirement to use bookkeeping scanning software but this may change in future. Most good cloud accounting systems have this functionality and when it comes to VAT returns having a scan of invoices to hand is a positive for business efficiency.

MTD for Business

Potential Impact of MTD for Business

  • Software – If you don’t use functional compatible software you may choose to change from spreadsheets Xero, Sage Cloud or QBO and pay the monthly subscription for these.
  • More efficient businesses – It is expected that productivity will improve as all kinds of business owners make the move to online, digital accounting software with live bank feeds.

Are you ready for Making Tax Digital?

At Shaper Accountants we are helping businesses get ready for the new tax reporting requirements so if you have questions or need help please get in touch.

You can find out more information here.




Powerful new App launched by Shaper Accountants

It’s landed!

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The Brand new App from Shaper Accountants

We are constantly looking for ways we can improve the service we offer our clients and friends, and we are proud to announce the launch of our brand new Shaper App.  It’s completely free of charge to download and it’s available for iPhone, iPads and Android phones and devices.

So the next time you need to look up a tax rate or work out a VAT calculation, our new App can help.  It provides you with up to date, important accountancy data at your fingertips.


Photo Receipt Management, Email and Store

Never lose a receipt again! Using the latest app you can track receipts and expenses literally at the touch of a button. With minimal effort you can take a picture of any receipt and save it to your App. Any additional information can be added later and receipts stored by amount, category, and date.

It can help you track all your expenses with ease and enable us to interact electronically with you.

app - 3 devices

If we do your bookkeeping for you and you use Receipt Bank, you can access that too from the Shaper App too.

GPS Mileage Tracking and Management tool | iOS only

When it comes to mileage half the battle is keeping an accurate tab on your journeys. Using the built-in GPS in your device, it will automatically help you to track mileage helping you to record every single trip at the touch of a button. Plus it also manages trips as well, storing them and allowing them to view, edit or email with complete ease.

Micro Business - Accounts and Tax

Keeping in touch

We are committed to finding ways to communicate and interact with clients in the most efficient possible way.  The new App enables us to send push notifications to all App users.  We will be using this feature to share with you important news, deadline reminders and financial updates.

It’s available for iPhone, iPad and Android devices and it’s available free of charge today. Click on the App store, search for Shaper Accountants and download our handy little App that will make life much easier for you.


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QR Code - Shaper App



Are you an overwhelmed Micro Business?

Recent research undertaken by cloud accounting software FreeAgent, says:

Micro Businesses accounting software

Many micro-businesses are totally overwhelmed by the burdens of tax and their accountancy obligations.

Also over 600,000 micro business owners are missing tax deadlines. If that’s you, do not panic. There is always help available.

The key factors that will lead you to be in this position are:

  • Poor organisation
  • Inadequate systems
  • An inability to get your hands on your financial data – fast.

You will find your business life is far simpler if you bite the bullet and invest in good cloud accounting software. It does usually, mean a monthly fee, but it will save you time, worry and effort and pay back fast. Even the smallest business with few sales needs to keep good, accurate records of costs. The research found that 17% of those surveyed did not have immediate access to their accounting data. Stress and anxiety about your accounts are a key indicator that you need to get conventional systems in place – fast.

Organisation is key here, and no amount of paper lists and excel spreadsheets are going to serve you well. The more difficult your accounting system is for an accountant to handle – the more it’s likely to cost you to get it put right and turned into your annual accounts.

Nowadays there are several accounting software packages at affordable prices and they link to your business bank account. This is now mainstream for micros and small businesses – with creatives and start-ups leading the way. Although good, easy software with bank statement uploads can work for some – although this may become too slow for you, as your operation grows.

When it comes to tax returns, many business owners feel anxious. If your records are up to date, and on an accounting system, you can do a Self-Assessment Tax Return or even a Corporation Tax Return yourself – but most business owners will, at some point ask an accountant. There’s always the added concern that you may be missing out on tax relief, or you may not have claimed all that you can. Getting a HMRC fine for late filing can often add to the anxiety of not having your business accounts in order.

If you use software like Free Agent (aimed at the contractor or micro entity) or Xero (aimed at the micro/small & medium business) your accountant or bookkeeper can see and manage your data for you – making it far less painful to file your taxes and your annual accounts.

Many micro businesses are benefiting from the sheer power and joy of using accounting software and seeing their business on a dashboard – this is no longer the domain of the big players only. Affordable, accessible and free to trial – bring on the game changers and get control of your business – fast.

You can contact us or follow us on TwitterMicro Business - Accounts and Tax

or e-mail for advice.