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An international signing for Fulham Accountants

11 September 2018 •

South African born Jess Gibbons has joined the busy audit and accounts department at Warrener Stewart as an assistant accounts manager.

Jess is a qualified SAIPA accountant having studied a Bachelor of Accounting Sciences at the University of South Africa. Upon completing her articles at the end of 2017, she decided to take time off travelling before moving to the UK to join other family members.

Whilst new to UK tax system, Jess studied and worked with International Financial Reporting Standards, most of which are also applicable in the UK. Jess brings with her a wealth of accounting knowledge following the work she carried out with small to medium sized businesses whilst in Johannesburg. To augment her South African qualifications, she plans to study to become an ACCA approved accountant.

“I have always loved the simplicity of numbers,” says Jess. “There is always one answer! I’m looking forward to the variety that comes with working alongside owner managed businesses who rely upon the advice and support of their accountant.”

A new specialist joins Warrener Stewart’s US tax department

13 August 2018 • US Tax returns, Warrener Stewart News

Under Damian Talbot’s leadership the US tax department at Warrener Stewart continues to grow as more private clients seek help with their US filing obligations.  

Following the appointment earlier this year of three new US tax recruits, Georgia Maher a qualified taxation technician, is the latest recruit to join Warrener Stewart's US Tax department. With seven years' experience already as an Enrolled Agent, Georgia is looking forward to helping many of the private clients who turn to Warrener Stewart for advice on US tax.

Prior to joining the Fulham based tax specialists, Georgia graduated in 2003 with a degree in Psychology and Neuroscience from Keele University. She started her tax career at Fisher Philips working in corporate tax, before joining Ingleton Partners to specialise in US Tax. For the past six years Georgia has worked with more corporate clients whilst in the US tax departments of Frank Hirth and most recently Buzzacott.

Commenting on her move to Warrener Stewart, she said; “I’m really looking forward to working more closely with private clients and helping them with their US tax responsibilities. Unlike UK tax, US tax laws can change quite quickly, by working on a one to one basis I will be able to help clients have a more targeted approach and ensure they meet all their US tax obligations.”

Warrener Stewart strengthens their tax department

23 May 2018 •

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As advisors to many business owners based near their offices in Fulham, Warrener Stewart has seen a high demand for their tax services, especially for advice on US tax. Due to the complex US tax laws, anyone with a US tax responsibility needs to adhere to the US tax deadlines. Over the past three years Warrener Stewart has grown their US tax department so they can offer one to one advice from qualified US tax specialists.

The latest recruits to the ever-growing US tax department include, pictured left to right; Adrian Harvey, Danielle Byron and Elliot McGahan.

“We are delighted to welcome three new tax specialists to the US department,” commented Damian Talbot who is a qualified Enrolled Agent. “There is an ever-growing demand for bespoke tax advice which has led to us strengthening our tax department with Danielle, Elliott and Adrian, who all want to become Enrolled Agents.”

Upon graduating from National University of Ireland, in Galway, Danielle Byron spent four years working in the US as an accountant. Since returning to the UK she has continued working in US taxation. At the time of joining Warrener Stewart Danielle is working towards becoming an Enrolled Agent, as well as completing her ACCA exams.

Whilst at university in Leeds, studying Law, Elliot McGahan decided to pursue a career in tax having researched and written his dissertation on VAT evasion. Since joining the US tax team at Warrener Stewart he too is studying for the Enrolled Agent qualification. Once qualified as an EA, Elliot also want to work towards his UK tax qualifications by following the ATT and CTA pathway.

Like Elliott and Danielle, Adrian is also studying for his tax qualifications having joined Warrener Stewart on their tax training scheme. An Economics graduate from Royal Holloway University, Adrian initially embarked on a career in tax within Expatriate taxation. Following his move to Warrener Stewart, he is looking forward to enhancing his understanding and expertise of the complex and ever-changing world of taxation by studying to become an Enrolled Agent in the future.

US Citizens owning UK companies and dividends overview

20 April 2018 • US Tax returns

US Citizens owning UK companies and dividends overview

On 22 December 2017, President Trump signed into law major tax changes that will affect almost all US citizens that own an interest in a UK company.

Our dedicated US tax team have set out below the key points that US shareholders need to know:

  • Repatriation tax of between 15.5%-18% of Earnings & Profits generated between 1986 and 31 December 2017 not distributed by the company as a one-off tax based on 31 December 2017 accounts and the shareholder’s actual rate of tax.
  • The repatriation tax is a tax on the shareholder, and therefore for individuals owning shares in a UK company it is a personal tax on the US citizen and not a corporate responsibility.
  • Removal of eligibility for receiving a qualified dividend which is taxed at low tax rates from 31 December 2017.
  • The repatriation tax can be paid in instalments over 8 years as follows:
    • Years 1 to 5 - 8%
    • Year 6 - 15%
    • Year 7 - 20%
    • Year 8 - 25%
  • The first repatriation tax instalment is due on 15 June 2018 and then on 15 April thereafter.
  • The changes to the qualified dividend rules will likely result in an increased US liability for US Citizens.
  • US shareholders will need to change their profit extraction policy in 2018 and beyond.  There is no standard solution, every US individual will need bespoke advice and change the way in which they extract profits from their UK companies.

Our comments

There has been a huge out cry from the expat tax community regarding both the business and legality of the new rules.  It is entirely possible that there will be future changes and interpretations that will occur. However, we need to assume the legislation is here to stay.

We suspect some US individuals will need to take extreme measures such as expatriating from the US or closing and re-opening companies but for most US Individuals these extreme measures may not be necessary.

Please do contact our specialist US tax advisors if you would like our help in coming to terms with the changes, call us on 020 7731 6163.

A review of the changes introduced for the new tax year 2018/2019

17 April 2018 • HMRC News

If you cast your mind back to last March when Chancellor Philip Hammond delivered his Spring Budget, you may recall he made changes to various tax allowances which have now come into effect. Our tax team have highlighted the main changes that may affect you and your business.

Personal Allowance

This year, most tax payers will see an increase in their personal allowance; the basic rate of 20% has risen from £11,500 to £11,850, whilst the higher rate threshold has increased from £45,000 to £46,350.

The point at which higher earners lose their personal allowance entirely has also increased in line with the higher personal allowance.

Class 4 NIC Increase

For anyone self-employed, there is now have a higher threshold for Class 4 NIC’s which sees the income level at which you must pay this class of national insurance increase from £8,164 to £8,424.

Dividend Allowance

From this April, the dividend allowance is dropping from £5,000 to £2,000, allowing shareholders to receive only £2,000 per year as a dividend before paying tax.

Auto Enrolment

For those with employees, several of the new changes introduced include the rise in the living wage to £7.83 and auto enrolment may mean higher costs for your business.

The Government has raised the statutory contribution you as an employer must make to each employees’ pension fund from 1% to 2%. You may also want to factor in that this will increase again to 3% in 2019.

If you want to discuss how these of any of the above might affect you or your business, please do not hesitate to contact one of our tax specialists on 020 7731 6163.

Highlights from the Spring Statement

14 March 2018 • HMRC News

Philip Hammond’s new style of Spring Statement was aimed at making a statement on the health of the economy and not as a forum to announce tax changes or spending announcements. Mr Hammond was keen to stress that the economy had performed better than expected, with a predicted growth of 1.5%, plus the expected reduction in inflation during the coming year should produce real wage growth in 2018/19.

Following his speech yesterday, our tax team here at Warrener Stewart has analysed the information to share any points of interest that might affect SME business owners. Most notably, he used the Spring Statement to announce bringing forward the introduction of the next business rates valuation to 2021, plus assistance to increase production in small businesses. He also spoke about measures designed to eliminate late payment, certainly a welcome intervention for many business owners in light of recent failings like Carillion.

Rather than announcing tax changes the Chancellor did announce the start of several consultation documents to help shape future taxes. Amongst these is the consultation on reducing tax on the least polluting vans, and ways to tackle single use plastic waste. There is also going to be a consultation on the role of cash within our ever-growing digital economy, including looking at continuing with 1p and 2p coins, and £50 notes.

The Chancellor has asked business owners to share their views on whether the £85,000 VAT registration threshold is helping them or creating a burden. Likewise, the government is keen to know what business owners think about their revisions to their proposals on corporate tax for the digital economy. They will also be holding a series of collaborative workshops to review alternative methods of VAT collection.

Commenting on the Spring Statement, Warrener Stewart’s tax director Ryan Lane said; “The main purpose of the Statement seems to have been a reassurance to the country that we are on track and to engage with businesses on their future via the many consultations they announced.”

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