How do I change accountants?

Changing your accountant is simple; just send us the details of your previous accountants and we will handle the rest.

How much do accountants charge?

We charge a fixed fee agreed in advance, which depends on the complexity of your business, the work you require and whether or not additional services are required.

Do I need an accountant?

You are not legally required to use an accountant’s services, however, even if you are self-employed, you have to keep a record of income and outgoings and inform HMRC that you’re trading, pay your tax and National Insurance on time and do an annual self assessment. So, even if you have a simple business, it’s usually best to hire an accountancy firm to ensure you remain compliant.

What should I look for in an accountant?

You need to trust your accountant completely and feel comfortable working with them. Make sure you use a “Chartered” or “Certified” accountant to ensure that your advisers are qualified. Look for an accountants with a good reputation, lots of case studies and a friendly culture. Don’t be tempted by cheap package options and don’t just go for someone local purely for convenience.

What’s the difference between a bookkeeper and an accountant?

Bookkeepers are responsible for keeping an accurate, day-to-day record of all financial transactions of a business, whilst an accountant builds on that information to provide a bigger picture of financial analysis, including an annual summary for tax purposes.

How are accountants paid?

Usually you can pay your accountant by direct debit, cheque and/or BACS. If you’re an Ascendis client, just visit our Client Portal to make a payment.

How do I register as self employed?

First, make sure you have a National Insurance number. Then, visit the HMRC Online Registration page to register as self-employed online. Once you’ve registered, you will receive a Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) and HMRC will set up the right tax and National Insurance contributions records. Keep your UTC safe as you’ll need it when submitting your Self Assessment tax return.

What is the self assessment tax return deadline?

In most cases, you must submit your tax return by 31st January following the end of the relevant tax year. For example, your tax bill for the 2017-2018 tax year must be settled by 31st January 2019.

Being self-employed, can I claim expenses?

Yes, you will be able to claim expenses if you are self-employed, however they vary considerably depending on your sector, so further advice should be sought from your accountant.

Do I need to charge VAT?

The current VAT threshold is £85,000.00 from 1st April 2018. You must register for VAT if your annual turnover exceeds this amount.

What is the penalty for filing my tax return late?

HMRC will give you a penalty of £100 if you are late submitting your tax return. To avoid late submission fees, appoint a specialist tax adviser to handle your tax affairs and ensure you remain compliant.