With the furlough scheme ending at the end of this month and a rumoured Autumn Budget (the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) will be preparing its next economic and fiscal forecast on 27th October), September will bring forth lots of changes for UK businesses. Here’s what you need to know this month.
New advisory fuel rates
From 1st September, the rate per mile has increased slightly for petrol and diesel cars. This means that your business could claim up to 15p per mile (diesel) and up to 20p per mile (petrol). Fully electric cars can claim 4p per mile.
Furlough Scheme ends
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends on 30th September 2021. To claim support during this month your business must submit its application by 14th October. It’s not clear yet, whether the Government will re-activate the scheme in the future should the UK have an Autumn firebreak lockdown. It is worth checking your local council and Skills Hub to see if any additional support is available.
Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Growth Hub link (https://www.ciosgrowthhub.com/)
Heart of SW Growth Hub link (https://www.heartofswgrowthhub.co.uk/)
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme reminder
All applications for the 5th grant must be submitted by 30th September 2021. This time you will most likely need to provide 2 turnover figures when you make your claim.
New National Insurance rates
Boris Johnson recently announced an increase in National Insurance rates to raise £36bn boost for health and social care. From April 2022, NI will rise by 1.25% and calculated as a separate tax on earned income from 2023.
HMRC scams on the rise
Last but not least, it’s been reported that HMRC scams have doubled in the past year, with many of them related to the pandemic.
HMRC have warned of a Coronavirus Financial Support Scam where people are asked to provide personal information as part of their furlough and SEISS application. Others have been targeted for ‘Covid-19 Relieve’ or ‘goodwill payments’ where they ask for bank details.
In other cases people have been targeted in a phone scams where automated phone messages warn you of arrest for not paying enough tax. Scam callers have also ‘spoofed’ HMRC’s number and ring you asking for confidential bank information.
If it seems too good to be true then it’s likely it is, and at the very least worth investigating. If you’re contacted telling you you’re due a tax rebate and need to click on a link to fill in bank details, chances are it is a scam. As with your bank, HMRC will never ask you to confirm your financial information.
Know what a malicious email or web page looks like? Scammers are getting better at imitating genuine business logos and contact information to create fake web content. HMRC’s own web pages are being copied in order to obtain your information and paid adverts at the top of your search engine are also spoofing HMRC search terms.
As with any communications, if you’re not sure if it’s genuine, do contact HMRC directly, and of course report any scams so they can be cracked down on.
As always, if you need any advice from our Plymouth based team, please do give us a ring. 01752 665134.
Our expert team provides a range of accountancy services including bookkeeping , payroll and tax returns