THE phrase “tax planning” has come to have negative connotations in recent years but planning appropriately for tax liabilities is a critical part of running a successful business.

In any other aspect of business, planning is seen as good business management and issues can be caused by tax being considered too late in a project or not considered at all.

First of all you need to find a tax adviser who is willing to invest in your business, to understand you and your priorities for the business and be forward thinking.

Your tax advisor should work with you to regularly review the tax reliefs that your business can access.

The UK tax system is built around several reliefs from the main rate of corporation tax and it is worth revisiting these regularly.

Research and Development (R&D) tax credits and capital allowances are still providing valuable benefits to many businesses and remember that R&D tax relief is not only for businesses who have labs with people in white coats!

Don’t forget about transactional taxes like VAT and Stamp Duty Land Tax.

At times VAT is the forgotten tax, particularly in one off business transactions but with the VAT rate now higher than the main rate of corporation tax, it’s important to get it right.

Finally, remember to think about tax holistically – it is a cost for you, your business, your shareholders and your employees and it is helpful to understand it in the round.

Don’t forget that all businesses are acting as an unpaid tax collector for the treasury – collecting large amounts of PAYE, NIC and VAT.

The importance of that role is often understated and it’s great for businesses to understand their overall tax contribution.

It’s one of the important contributions that businesses make to the success of the UK’s economy overall.

If you would like advice on business tax please contact or call 01904 464100

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