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Other news in brief

Other news in brief

A round up of other news this week.

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The Commons Public Bill Committee concluded its scrutiny of Finance Bill 2020 on 18 June. As expected, the only amendments that were passed by the Committee were those laid by the Government, most notably the re-introduction of the legislation extending the off-payroll working rules (IR35). An updated version of the Bill has been published reflecting these amendments and the consequential re-numbering of clauses and Schedules. The next step is the Report Stage and third reading in the House of Commons which is scheduled to take place on 1 and 2 July 2020. The Government has published a number of amendments introducing new clauses in response to COVID-19 which are expected to be passed at Report Stage.

The basic requirements of Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT – keeping digital records and submitting returns using MTD compatible software – have been in place for most businesses above the VAT registration threshold since April 2019. Although the majority of businesses subject to the new rules have signed up for MTD, a significant minority have not and HMRC are currently sending out targeted compliance letters to encourage these remaining businesses to do so. It is understood that a common reason cited for not signing up has been an assumption that because the business submits VAT returns online it is already complying with MTD, i.e. misunderstanding rather than deliberate non-compliance. HMRC’s current approach is therefore to encourage compliance rather than impose penalties but this is likely to change in the future. If you would like to discuss any aspect of MTD, including the digital links requirements coming in next year, then please contact us.

Andy Pyle, UK Head of Real Estate at KPMG, comments on June’s quarterly rent date for commercial property, which is likely to see a significant shortfall in payments from cash strapped occupants.

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