How to avoid losing access to your agent account

Failing to respond to an innocuous looking letter from HMRC can end up with your agent account being blocked. ICAEW’s Tax Faculty explains how to avoid this trap. HMRC periodically writes to agents to ask them to confirm who supervises them for anti-money laundering (AML) regulation purposes. It is not clear what triggers this check […]

6 tips to file your tax return by midnight and avoid a £100 fine

The final deadline for self-assessors to file their 2021-22 tax returns is midnight tonight – failing to do so could result in a £100 fine. Last week, HMRC said it was still waiting for nearly 3.4 million people to file their returns. While many will have done so by now, there is often a last-minute […]

Are funeral costs getting cheaper?

Average funeral costs decreased by around £100 last year compared with 2021, according to SunLife’s annual cost of dying report. However, with rising professional fees, such as probate, and higher send-off costs, which include venue hire and catering, the overall cost of dying has increased to more than £9,000.  With households feeling the pinch during […]

Bereavement support payment extended to cohabitees with dependent children

Bereavement support payments (BSPs) are being extended to cover cohabitees with dependent children – rather than just spouses. The sum of almost £10,000 will benefit unmarried parents going forward, and will retrospectively apply to many unmarried parents who were bereaved between 2018 and now, following a vote in the House of Commons. However – eligible […]

Why it could be easier to get a mortgage on a flat with cladding issues

Owners of flats in high-rise buildings that have unsafe cladding may be able to more easily sell or remortgage their homes, thanks to a shift in lending policy at six major banks. Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, Nationwide, NatWest and Santander have each committed to consider mortgage applications on flats in buildings with cladding that […]

How are local councils helping with the cost of living crisis?

While council tax bills are likely to rise for most people from April, some local authorities are scrapping the tax entirely for vulnerable residents. During the Autumn Statement in November, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt gave local authorities in England greater flexibility for setting council tax during the next financial year, paving the way for bills to […]

Santander launches new £200 switching bonus – should you get a new bank account?

Santander has recently launched a switching incentive for new and existing customers who move to one of its current accounts. Those thinking of switching to the Santander Edge, 123 or Everyday current accounts could pocket £200 for the move.  What’s more, the Santander Edge and 123 accounts both pay cashback on household bills which could […]

Can you still claim tax relief for working from home?

Millions of workers were able to claim tax relief on expenses they incurred from working from home during the Covid-19 pandemic – but the rules have changed since then. Some people will still be eligible to make a claim for 2022-23 and beyond, but only in certain circumstances. If you were forced to work from […]

Agent Update 104: points of interest

ICAEW’s Tax Faculty highlights key news and reminders for agents including: new option for identity verification; withdrawal of FBI2; crypto gains and losses; and voluntary class 2 national insurance contributions (NIC). Agent Update 104 contains numerous updates for agents. Many have been shared in tax news, but the following should also be noted. HMRC identity […]

More to be done with tax policy to help achieve net zero

ICAEW’s Tax Faculty reflects on the tax recommendations contained in the government’s net zero review chaired by Chris Skidmore MP, the former energy minister. On 13 January 2023, Chris Skidmore MP published the final report Mission Zero: Independent Review of Net Zero. Four of the report’s 129 recommendations relate specifically to tax policy. One overarching […]