Seasonal freezes (March 2018)

With much of the country dealing with heavy snow this winter, it seems appropriate that the November Budget had a theme of freezing things. After the controversy and backtracking from his Spring Budget, the Chancellor seems to have ensured that his second effort of the year had a smoother landing.

Amongst the high-profile announcements were the abolition of stamp-duty for first time buyers, coupled with more investment in construction for the housing market, a cash injection of £2 billion for the NHS, a promise to look at how taxation can reduce plastic waste and an extension of the Young Person’s Railcard up to age 30.

But as well as these friendly soundbites, there were significant changes announced in specific areas. The feature story in our Spring newsletterCompany car costs to increase with new emissions charges,looks into the details of the increases to emissions charges over the coming years. With benefit-in-kind taxes paid on 960,000 company cars in 2015/16, lots of companies will be affected. The changes also show the government’s efforts to encourage companies to reduce their carbon footprint, but could lead to significantly increased costs for employers. If you’re looking to replace a company car over the coming years, or a car fleet, there may be some surprises in store.

Other topics we’re covering include:

  • Indexation changes hit corporate capital gains The Budget introduced a freeze on indexation relief which affects corporate capital gains from January 2018, which means larger tax bills for incorporated landlords looking to sell property.
  • Making bullying and harassment a thing of the pastAfter countless very high-profile allegations it is clear this issue needs to be properly addressed, so have you got robust policies and procedures in place?
  • VAT registration thresholds frozen from April 2018 Ahead of a major consultation on the VAT rules, the government is freezing registration thresholds for two years.
  • More holiday rights for self-employed workers More developments from the ‘gig economy’ are seeing rights to paid annual leave guaranteed for all workers.

We will bring you another update after the Chancellor’s Spring Statement. Please do get in touch if you think you may be affected by any of the topics raised here.

Barry Sims

Barry Sims