ICAEW.com works better with JavaScript enabled.

Faculty news: March 2024

Helpsheets and support

Published: 29 Feb 2024 Update History

Exclusive content
Access to our exclusive resources is for specific groups of students, users, members and subscribers.
Read ICAEW’s tax news, updated every week and available to all

Or browse our full range of public content that pulls together opinion, analysis, interviews and features on the profession and the world of business.

Frank Haskew reports on the spring Budget, HMRC service standards, professional standards and regulation and Making Tax Digital.

Staff news

We are sorry to report that Mei Lim Cooper left the Tax Faculty at the end of February to take up a new role in the private client team of a top 10 ICAEW member firm. During her time with the faculty, Mei proved a very able secretary to the Private Client Committee and, among her considerable technical skills, she became ICAEW’s go-to expert on the taxation of non-doms and crypto assets. We will miss her, but wish her well in her new role. 

Spring Budget 2024

The spring Budget is due to take place on Wednesday, 6 March 2024. Ahead of the Budget, the faculty contributed extensively to ICAEW’s Budget representation ‘Resilience and Renewal’ Budget 2024 Representation. The faculty also submitted a letter to the Financial Secretary to the Treasury covering a number of VAT simplification ideas. The faculty will bring you all of the news on Budget Day itself, and we will also be presenting a webinar on key announcements on Friday 8 March, from 11:00-12:00. The event is already proving popular with more than 1,000 booked on, but there is always room for more! 

HMRC service standards

HMRC’s service standards remain the number one problem for ICAEW members. ICAEW Tax Faculty wrote to the Financial Secretary to the Treasury to set out our concerns on HMRC service performance. The letter included member case studies of poor performance that have incurred unnecessary delays and extra time and costs, ultimately impacting on growth and productivity of the UK economy. 

In addition, ICAEW and other professional bodies developed an online survey to gather feedback on HMRC’s performance against the standards in the HMRC Charter. The closing date is 8 March 2024. Please complete it – it should not take longer than 10 minutes to fill in, but will provide valuable feedback. HMRC’s plans for customer service in 2024/25 were discussed at some length at a meeting of the Representative Bodies Steering Group on 12 February 2024. The discussion focused on how HMRC will manage its services against the backdrop of a significant reduction in its budget. 

Professional standards and regulation 

The government is still considering regulation of the tax profession. We have continued to engage with HMRC and government in advance of the Budget, which may include an announcement about the publication of a consultation document on the topic. We remain concerned about the need for better data to underpin any decisions, and whether any regulation would actually address bad practices, rather than merely increase costs for the majority of professional advisers, most of whom are providing a good service to taxpayers and thereby helping to improve compliance.  

Making Tax Digital

Our representational work on Making Tax Digital continues. ICAEW provided feedback to HMRC on a number of specific aspects of MTD ITSA design, including whether automatic quarterly updates should be supported by HMRC, the sign-up journey and resources for those that join the private beta testing starting in April 2024. We also attended a meeting of the MTD advisory Forum.

Global Accounting Alliance 

I joined a call of the tax directors of the Global Accounting Alliance (GAA) where we discussed latest developments and concerns in the member countries and internationally. Areas of particular interest included further developments on regulation of tax advisers in other countries, including both the US and Australia. Attendees also reported poor service standards across national tax authorities with long wait times and better digital services lagging behind the withdrawal of front line service staff – it appears that the UK is not alone in facing these challenges and how they can be resolved.

Representational work

In addition to the Representative Bodies Steering group meeting mentioned above, faculty staff also attended HMRC’s second annual stakeholder conference as well as a number of other meetings with HMRC staff. These included meetings of the Joint Customs Consultative Committee and the Penalty Reform Forum as well as meetings to discuss the Managed Service Company Providers sector and a review of the Tour Operators Margin Scheme. 

ICAEW members continue to highlight numerous problems in the R&D sector, with numerous examples reported of delays and inconsistencies in HMRC’s approach. We reconvened the faculty’s R&D tax credit working party to discuss them and how we might help to improve the situation. ICAEW’s Budget letter and ICAEW’s recently launched manifesto referred to above also highlighted concerns about problems in the R&D claims sector and the need for improvements to be made. We continue to work closely with colleagues from CIOT on how to improve the current R&D sector. In addition, as part of a drive to improve standards in this sector, the faculty is working with CIOT and PCRT colleagues to revise the PCRT topical guidance note.

Tax Faculty meetings and representations

During the month there was a meeting of the Private Client Sub-Committee. 

We responded (ICAEW Rep 20/24) to a consultation, draft regulations and guidance published by HMRC on 25 January 2024 with regard to calculating PAYE liabilities in cases of non-compliance for off-payroll working (IR35). 

In Rep 21/24, we responded to the consultation Transparency of land ownership involving trusts.

Webinars, events and podcasts

February was a busy month for webinars, with three taking place. 

8 February: Navigating the transition from CHIEF to CDS 

27 February: Tax in practice webinar 

28 February: Taxation of company cars 

Looking ahead to March, the faculty will be holding its Budget webinar as noted above, followed on 13 March by a presentation explaining the Carbon Border Adjustment Model. 

Our new monthly podcast series The Tax Track is now well under way and getting good feedback. The third episode, presented by Lindsey Wicks, Stephen Relf and Ed Saltmarsh, looks at a VAT case about poppadoms and tax changes taking effect from April 2024. Many thanks to Lindsey Wicks for creating the programme and to the rest of the faculty team for their support. The podcast series is available on various social channels including Google and Spotify. Do listen to them and tell us what you think. 

Media activity 

The faculty’s Senior Technical Manager Richard Jones appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Moneybox Live programme, along with a spokesperson from the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed, where they discussed the tax pitfalls of setting up a new business, and answered tax questions. There was considerable media interest in the 31 January filing deadline and HMRC’s service performance. Caroline Miskin was quoted in the Daily Telegraph and her news comment about 1.1m taxpayers missing the deadline was picked up by the Daily Telegraph in print and online, as well as by GB News.

Faculty news

Frank Haskew’s monthly round-up of the latest developments at ICAEW’s Tax Faculty. Here you can access news from throughout the year.

More from the Tax Faculty

Latest news
Making tax digital image

Stay up to date with the latest developments in tax by signing up to the Tax Faculty's weekly e-newsletter

Practical guidance

Comprehensive support for Tax practitioners each month from the Tax Faculty and expert contributors.

Technical support
Tax Faculty image

Expert advice from the Tax Faculty's technical managers on all the developments in tax policy and practice.

Open AddCPD icon

Add Verified CPD Activity

Introducing AddCPD, a new way to record your CPD activities!

Log in to start using the AddCPD tool. Available only to ICAEW members.

Add this page to your CPD activity

Step 1 of 3
Download recorded
Download not recorded

Please download the related document if you wish to add this activity to your record

What time are you claiming for this activity?
Mandatory fields

Add this page to your CPD activity

Step 2 of 3
Mandatory field

Add activity to my record

Step 3 of 3
Mandatory field

Activity added

An error has occurred
Please try again

If the problem persists please contact our helpline on +44 (0)1908 248 250