How to set up and run a small business

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In this concise guide, we look at the taxes you will encounter if you start your own business as a sole trader, and other things you should bear in mind before taking the plunge and becoming self employed.
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Small businesses, and the individuals who run them, are subject to a wide array of taxes – from Corporation Tax to National Insurance. Here is an overview of the main UK business taxes you will encounter as a business owner, together with links to our more in-depth guides.
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Following George Osborne’s delivery of the 2014 Budget, here is a summary of the main tax changes and announcements that will be of interest to those that own and run small businesses: Continue…

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As more and more people choose to work from home, the question of how you can reclaim any home office expenses is frequently asked.

The general HMRC rule for claiming tax relief on business expenses is that you can only reclaim costs that have been ‘wholly and exclusively’ incurred in connection with your trade.
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Tax isn’t the most exciting part of running your own business, but it is an issue that you will have to tackle at some point.

To help you to quickly get to grips with the subject, here are some handy tax tips based on our findings of working with small businesses over the past decade, and from our own personal experience at the ByteStart team.
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If you are a limited company shareholder, you may have to pay personal tax on any dividend income you receive. This article outlines how company dividends are taxed.
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National Insurance is a deduction from earnings, set up originally to fund various State benefits such as the NHS, the State pension and other welfare-related schemes.

In reality, it is just another tax. In fact, as standard income tax rates have remained constant for many years, NI rates have soared.

In this article we look at how NI works, and what your National Insurance Contributions (NICs) will be as a small business person. The guide has been updated with the 2013/14 tax year NIC rates.
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Large firms are set to enjoy another Corporation Tax cut following Budget 2013, but while the headline rate has been reduced significantly under the current Government, small companies will not benefit.
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The most talked-about small business announcement from Budget 2013 is the implementation of a new ‘Employment Allowance’, which will reduce firms’ Employers’ NI bills by up to £2,000 from April 2014.
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With the tax year end on the horizon once again, and significant changes to tax rates taking effect from April 2013, we examine how individuals can make the most of the currently available tax reliefs.
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Controversial changes to the Child Benefit regime went live on 7th January 2013. The benefit is no longer universal, and will be reduced when one parent earns over £50,000 per year, and scrapped entirely when earnings reach £60,000.
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If you need to submit a Self-Assessment Tax Return (SATR) it’s imperative you get it in on time and error-free. In this article, Carol Cheesman explains how to get started with your SATR, and how to avoid common mistakes.
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From 7th January 2013, Child Benefit (CB) will be means tested for the first time. HMRC are sending out letters to taxpayers over the coming weeks. So, how will you be affected?
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As the tax year draws to an end, self employed people and limited company owners should consider their tax saving strategies, to ensure that they do not have to pay the highest rate of tax on their hard-earned income.
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Guide to Business Rates

February 19, 2012

Just as you have to pay council tax on your home, so your business must cough up business rates for its premises. They can be a pain and an easily overlooked cost when you are starting your business. In some circumstances, you may even have to pay business rates if you run a business from home.

This guide will help you understand what business rates you might have to pay, how to challenge the rates set, and even if you can claim any relief.
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The end of the 2011-12 tax year is fast approaching – 5 April 2012. In this article, we look at some of the issues that you may like to consider while there is still time to act.
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HMRC has announced that it is to an impose a Capital Gains Tax ceiling on the amount of capital that can be distributed to shareholders when a limited company is wound up, before income tax is applied.
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If you are organising a well-deserved works party this Christmas HFM Accountants have summarised the current tax reliefs available: Continue…

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When you run a small business, either as a sole trader, partnership or limited company, there will always be a number of HMRC forms you will need to be aware of. Although your accountant will typically take care of many of your form-filling duties, we have summarised what the most common forms are used for in this article.
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A new, tough, HMRC penalty regime came into play from 1st April 2009. Individuals and business owners can now face penalties of up to 100% for deliberately underpaying tax.

The new HMRC penalty system has been drawn up to encourage people to take more care when submitting tax returns and other documents, as well as to deter deliberate under-assessment of tax liabilities.
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