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ICAEW technical round-up: November 2020

30 November 2020: This month’s top technical stories on ICAEW Insights feature more details on the third SEISS grant and extended furlough scheme, plus news on post-Brexit customs and VAT, 2020/21 reporting and MTD for Corporation Tax.

The eligibility criteria for the third SEISS grant have been further tightened. ICAEW’s Tax Faculty has warned that the rules have changed and claimants need to consider them carefully before claiming from 30 November.

ICAEW’s Tax Faculty has drawn up a list of key deadlines and dates for the extended furlough scheme, including dates for submission of claims.

Against a gloomy backdrop of the largest annual GDP fall in 300 years, the Chancellor announced unparalleled levels of spending and borrowing to meet the challenges of COVID-19 in 2021 and beyond. Read more on the Spending Review.

HMRC will publish the names, an indication of the value of claims and, for companies and LLPs, the Company Registration Numbers of employers that make claims under the furlough scheme for periods from December onwards, reports ICAEW’s Tax Faculty.

Brexit planning: Customs and VAT post the transitional period: ICAEW Tax Faculty has delved into all things VAT and customs for a special webinar covering the impending changes to import and export rules.

‘Significant improvement’ required for cashflow statements: The FRC’s latest thematic review on cashflows and liquidity highlighted basic errors in the preparation of cashflow statements as one of its ‘top ten issues’.

To help members think through how to approach the upcoming reporting season, ICAEW has produced a flowchart of six business questions (and accounting consequences) for 2020 year ends.

Chief Executive Michael Izza has introduced the Audit Manifesto, the latest part of ICAEW’s response to the modernisation of the profession, and the five principles which sit at its core.

Major changes to the scrutiny of foreign acquisitions and investment in the UK have been outlined by the government as it looks to beef up national security and prevent overseas companies from buying up sensitive UK assets. Read more.

Intermediaries which are not personal service companies, such as umbrella companies and agencies, will be treated differently to personal services companies in the new off-payroll working regime. Read more.

In the first report in its review of Capital Gains Tax, the Office for Tax Simplification has outlined where it believes the current regime is distorting taxpayer behaviour and suggests potential changes.

HMRC has published the long-awaited consultation on Making Tax Digital for corporation tax, confirming its plans for rolling out the flagship scheme.

Corporate Criminal Offence: Why all businesses should be taking this seriously. Lucy Sauvage, a Director in BDO’s Tax Risk team, answered key questions on risks relating to the corporate criminal offence and what organisations need to be thinking about.

Other technical news

In a special series of articles entitled People and Planet in the Accounts, ICAEW Insights explores how nature and society might be included in financial statements.

HMRC has confirmed that access to the EU VAT refund system will end on 31 March 2021 and claims relating to VAT incurred after 31 December 2020 will have to be made manually. Read more.

HMRC has published guidance on how organisations deal with VAT when selling overseas goods to customers within Great Britain from 1 January 2021. Read more.

The UK government has created the Trader Support Service to help firms involved in the movement of goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The service provides support on adapting to new processes, including issuing XI EORI numbers which are mandatory from 1 January 2021. Read more.

A review by the Financial Reporting Council into audits conducted for 2019/20 year ends found that auditors had taken on board enhanced policies and procedures for assessing going concern. Read more.

The Financial Reporting Council has encouraged companies to consider whether they should lengthen their reporting timetables for 2020/21 in line with the extension to reporting deadlines announced by the Financial Conduct Authority. Read more.

ICAEW’s Financial Reporting and Audit and Assurance faculties’ going concern and resilience event highlighted some of the issues preparers and auditors are facing in relation to going concern.

The COVID-19 pandemic may place subsidiaries in financial difficulty, leading to a greater need for letters of support. ICAEW has produced a guide to help auditors navigate this potentially complex topic.

Proposed legislation which places certain conditions on connected person sales in administration is under the spotlight. Will the proposed regulations solve the ‘perception’ problem? Find out more here.

The UK’s Joint Government Regulator TCFD Taskforce issued its interim report and a roadmap towards mandatory climate-related disclosures.

Hidden in the spending review was a statement that some income tax allowances and thresholds and national insurance limits would increase in line with the September CPI figure. ICAEW’s Tax Faculty explains what this means.

The UK government has extended the £1m annual investment allowance cap for a further year in a bid to stimulate investment. Read more.

The Treasury has published a series of tax announcements on issues ranging from the plastic packaging tax to the implications of withdrawing LIBOR. ICAEW’s Tax Faculty provides a summary.

HMRC is to increase awareness of its standard for agents and has pledged to continue working with professional bodies in its efforts to improve standards in the tax advice market.

A written ministerial statement confirms that the requirement for large businesses to notify HMRC when they adopt an uncertain tax position has been delayed until April 2022. ICAEW’s Tax Faculty has welcomed the deferral.

Construction industry scheme - draft legislation: HMRC has published draft Finance Bill legislation to tighten up the construction industry scheme.

Draft legislation has confirmed a new cap to reduce the number of fraudulent claims for research and development tax credits by SMEs, largely in line with consultation proposals. Read more.

HMRC is urging taxpayers to beware of contact from potential fraudsters and to report any suspicious messages as the self assessment deadline approaches. Read more.