Business Tax Manager

The Role

Duties and responsibilities would include the following:

  • Managing the corporation tax compliance process for a portfolio of corporate clients including both standalone clients and groups;
  • Tax advisory to partners and clients including:
  • -Structures – company, LLP, etc.;
  • -Restructuring;
  • -Research and development tax relief;
  • -Group tax planning;
  • -International matters;
  • -Venture capital tax reliefs;
  • -Share schemes and valuations;
  • -Corporate and property acquisitions and disposals; and
  • -Tax sections due diligence reports.
  • Identifying tax efficient opportunities for clients and liaising with partners on implementing those opportunities;
  • Responsible for managing billing and work in progress;
  • Team responsibilities including line management for junior staff and assisting in development, training and the appraisal process for sub team staff; and
  • Involvement in business development of the firm including attending networking events and opportunity to join a sector group.

Person Specification

  • Deliver work to a high standard and willingness to provide an excellent client service;
  • Able to demonstrate good client focused skills, ability to work unsupervised, work within a team, influence and negotiate;
  • Excellent communication skills essential, being able to communicate with all levels externally and internally; and
  • Show creativity with desire to identify possible tax opportunities and potential pitfalls.

Work-Based Competencies

  • Has previously managed a client portfolio including groups;
  • Ideally be CTA qualified;
  • Good Microsoft skills, outlook, excel, word; and
  • Alpha tax knowledge preferred.

International

Whether you are looking to expand your business into new territories outside of the UK, your charity has an international remit, or you are a non-domicile seeking support with your UK tax and compliance affairs, haysmacintyre has an exceptional track record of advising clients on cross border accounting and tax matters.

Our highly regarded team of international specialists will work with you in all phases of your expansion and have expertise across a wide range of jurisdictions. We offer a proactive and integrated global tax and business strategy service that address the tax risks and and compliance requirements of the legislative regimes in which you operate.

Brexit series: immigration

 

We are pleased to share the recording of our immigration webinar with Lizama Thahir, which covered the following topics:

  • General opportunities for businesses in Brexit
  • Workplace visas for EU nationals
  • Overview of business immigration options post Brexit

Thank you to everyone who attended the session and to Lizama for sharing her insightful views.

View the recording above.

Download the slides here.

Adjusting to the post-Brexit environment

 

Starting the series on 11 February, Natasha Frangos, Head of Corporate, was joined by Jeremy Thomson-Cook, Chief Economist at Equals Group, to discuss how UK businesses can navigate the new export and services rules.

If you’re interested in watching the full webinar and Q&A session, please watch the video above.

A Brexit deal agreed – the positives and negatives

The webinar began with a breakdown of the ‘Christmas Eve Deal’ agreed between the UK and EU, that took effect on 1 January 2021.

So, what are the positive takeaways from the deal? Firstly, Thomson-Cook stressed that a deal itself was a positive, considered against the ramifications of a ‘no deal scenario’ that many feared.

Goods exporters will be pleased to see that zero tariffs apply for trade, and European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) permits aren’t necessary when moving between the UK and EU.

Moving from the ground to the skies, UK airlines are still permitted to deliver cargo and passengers to the EU under the new deal, but onward legs are now no longer possible.

However, there are negative points too, particularly for UK services doing business with the EU. The loss of automatic recognition of qualifications will be keenly felt, requiring UK professionals to now register with each individual EU nation. For goods importers and exporters, the increased paperwork around customs duties and rules of origin is sure to increase time and cost.

Equally, both sides were unable to agree a plan to minimise border disruptions around physical checks on goods of a biological nature, threatening disruption and delays at UK ports.

While the positives have certainly been welcomed, the negatives to the UK-EU deal threaten uncertainty in months to come, which will inevitably lead to higher costs, more time spent on process and paperwork, and a decreased focus on productivity and profit.

So what does this mean for goods importers and exporters?

Importers and exporters will have been grateful to see zero tariffs on the movement of goods, although greater rules of origin apply now the UK is classed as a ‘third country’ in EU law.

Exporters must establish the applicable rule of origin classified by the Government, then develop origin determination, calculation, certification and the record-keeping process. This significant increase in process will come with an equivalent cost for businesses. Importers will also be required to provide more paperwork: a statement that they have documentary proof that the goods in question comply with the rules of origin.

We may see businesses reshoring to the EU as a result, especially given the notably low tolerances for waiving import and export duties.

Similarly, hauliers will be relieved that that ECMT permits won’t be required when travelling between the UK and EU, but this is also dampened by new rules – namely the increased paperwork now required at customs.

In the subsequent Q&A, Thomson-Cook touched on the UK recently applying to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), remarking that the UK opening up new customer and supplier bases will be beneficial, but the logistical difficulties of trading at a distance mean that the effect might be limited.

And for UK Services?

UK services are currently still trading on transition rules, with a deal to be agreed in March that will hopefully maintain uninterrupted business with the EU.

The biggest change may be the loss of the passporting provision, meaning that UK businesses will need to set up offices in every EU country that they wish to operate in.

Businesses will also have to assess the various ‘modes’ of business between the EU and UK, to ensure that they meet the necessary regulatory requirements for supplying EU customers.

As mentioned above, the loss of automatic recognition of qualifications is also a change that UK businesses will need to address quickly – applying for recognition in each individual member nation separately and taking into account that processes and requirements may differ significantly.

In the Q&A following his presentation, Thomson-Cook was asked how Brexit is likely to impact the UK job market. A sizeable question, this largely hinges on which sector is under examination. The COVID-19 furlough scheme has kept the market in a ‘cryogenic stasis’, he remarked, and a true picture will only emerge once the support schemes end. From an immigration perspective, the points-based immigration system has prompted a real issue in the services sector where local employers in the UK are now denied access to EU talent pools.

In the long term, this immigration change may lead to rising wages in these sectors, or potentially a significant decline in these services as staffing issues emerge. However, in the short term, office-based sectors are likely to see little effect of this change, with the key consequence being the notable increase in the amount of professional advice and support needed to navigate the post-Brexit circumstances.

Keeping an eye on Sterling

Since the Brexit transition ended on 1 January 2021, the British Pound has performed the best out of all G10 currencies, Thomson-Cook noted. However, this comes with an advisory that many in the industry expect that it will be the first to fall once the world begins to recover from COVID-19.

The UK’s recovery may be hindered by a second-round effect of Brexit, Thomson-Cook predicted – whether this takes the form of smaller issues that snowball (such as increased operational costs leading to decreased profitability) or larger pitfalls (such as ongoing negotiations over financial services).

Whilst COVID-19 is an acute pressure on the UK economy, he remarked, Brexit will likely function more as a categoric weakening in the long term. The ‘constructive ambiguity’ approach favoured by the Bank of England and potential tax hikes in the March Budget also hold potential to dampen the UK’s economic outlook, leaving Sterling in a tricky position through 2021.

The big topic in markets at the moment, Thomson-Cook remarked, is whether the UK will see inflation rise – and how long-lasting this may be. The current rallies in stock markets can be laid at the feet of ‘the great reflation trade’, namely how the inflation is expected to rise as the world recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Given the hit to demand – across almost all sectors – as a result of the pandemic, inflation is unlikely to rise until consumers are enabled to spend some of their lockdown savings. Whilst global stimulus packages are welcome, Thomson-Cook compared their effect on the markets to similar packages following the 2008 Global Financial Crash, where significant inflation was predicted but never materialised.

Business and consumers can both expect interest rates to remain low, he predicted, until consumer spending picks up and inflation can rise in conjunction.

Future topics featuring in haysmacintyre’s Brexit series includes post Brexit trading for UK businesses, immigration, withholding tax, employment tax and more. Our website will be updated with further information in due course.

EU businesses selling goods to UK consumers following Brexit

Prior to 1 January 2021, when an EU business supplied goods to a UK private consumer (B2C), the EU supplier charged EU VAT to the customer. This was the standard until the value of the supplies made to the UK exceeded the distance selling threshold (currently £70,000), at which point the EU business was then required to register for VAT in the UK and begin charging UK VAT to the consumers.

From 1 January 2021, the rules have now changed. The changes are as follows:

Goods not exceeding £135 in value

Previously if there was an import of goods into the UK with a value of less than £135 this could be treated as being VAT-free under the Low Consignment Stock relief. This relief is no longer in place from 1 January 2021, so all goods with a value of less than £135 will now be treated in the same way.

If the value of the goods being imported into the UK does not exceed £135, the point at which VAT is collected becomes the point of sale rather than the point of importation. This means that if an EU business (or any overseas business) is selling goods to a private consumer and the value of the goods is less than £135, there will be a requirement for the EU business to register for UK VAT and charge UK VAT at point of sale on the supply being made to the end customer.

Goods exceeding £135 in value

If the value of the goods exceeds £135, the previous import VAT procedures continue to apply. This means that if the supplier is responsible for the import of the goods then there is a requirement for that supplier to be registered for UK VAT and charge VAT on these supplies, but they can then recover the import VAT. This includes EU businesses.

However, there is an option to have the end consumer take responsibility for the cost of import into the UK. If EU businesses opt to take this route, the consumer is required to pay the import VAT when the goods arrive but the EU business does not need to charge VAT to the customer so would not be required to register for UK VAT. However, customers may be unwilling to pay additional VAT charges to secure the release of their goods and we are aware that many customers are refusing to do so leading to goods being returned.

Facilitating Online Marketplace (OMP)

A further point to note is that if goods that are already in the UK are being sold by an Online Marketplace (OMP), it will be the OMP that is deemed to be making the supplies for VAT purposes.

So what should an EU business do now?

If you are an EU business that is selling goods to UK consumers, or an OMP, you should consider whether the new rules will lead to a requirement for you to register for VAT in the UK. We would of course be happy to assist with any VAT registration applications and future compliance requirements.

UK businesses selling goods to EU consumers following Brexit

Prior to 1 January 2021, when a UK business supplied goods to individual consumers within the EU there was previously a requirement for UK VAT to be charged until the value of the goods sold to an individual country exceeded the distance selling threshold, at which point a requirement to register for VAT in that country arose. For example, if the value of sales to individuals in France were to exceed their threshold in a year, there would be a requirement to register for VAT in France and to begin charging French VAT to the customers. The distance selling thresholds vary from country to country, but are generally approximately €35,000.

With effect from 1 July 2021, the EU is removing the distance selling thresholds and in turn introducing new rules to prevent the need for multiple EU VAT registrations, however UK businesses will no longer be able to benefit from the distance selling thresholds from 1 January 2021, meaning a UK business selling goods to EU non-business customers must answer the question of what to do between 1 January 2021 and 1 July 2021, and then implement a plan for 1 July 2021 onwards.

Options from 1 January 2021 to 1 July 2021

From 1 January 2021, a UK business can treat the supply to EU customers as being a zero-rated export for UK VAT purposes. However, the issue here is that the goods would then be subject to import VAT on arrival into the EU, meaning that the customer would need to pay this import VAT in order to take delivery of the goods. This of course may not be in the best interests of the UK business on a commercial front.

Alternatively, a UK business may choose to act as the importer of the goods shipped into each EU country. This would mean that the UK business would need to register for VAT in that country and pay the import VAT (recovering it subject to the usual rules in each EU country in question), but the place of supply of the goods will be the EU country where they are sent, which means UK businesses must also charge VAT at the rate applicable in each of the EU countries where they are selling the goods.

The third option is to choose to hold stock in one EU country and fulfil orders from this EU country. This would require the UK business to register for VAT in that EU country, but in turn this would allow the import VAT to be paid (and recovered) by the UK business. As the UK business would then be registered for VAT in the EU country, the onward supply of the goods to the customers within the EU could then be treated as intra-EU supplies in the same way as currently, i.e. subject to the normal distance selling thresholds.

The fourth option is for the freight agent to take responsibility for the import of the products. If this option was adopted, there would be no need for the UK business to register in other EU countries, but the freight agent would be charging UK businesses the Import VAT incurred which would be an additional irrecoverable cost to the business.

There would be different VAT registration rules in each EU member state, so if VAT registration in an EU country is the route you wish to take we can put you in touch with advisors in other EU countries to assist with this process.

Post 1 July 2021 (for e-commerce businesses only)

From 1 July 2021, the EU are removing the distance selling thresholds and introducing the One Stop Shop (OSS). By removing the distance selling thresholds and implementing the OSS, e-commerce businesses selling to different EU countries will not have to register for VAT in each EU country. Instead, a business will need to charge the relevant VAT rate in the country where the goods are being sold but would declare this VAT via the OSS return.

UK businesses can also use this OSS system but would need to register as a ‘Non-Union’ taxpayer in one EU member state of their choosing. The UK business would need to submit regular domestic returns in that country as well as the quarterly OSS returns, like any other EU e-commerce business, preventing the need for them to register in every EU country they are selling goods into.

What to do now?

If you are a UK business that is currently selling goods to non-business customers in other EU countries, you should consider whether you wish to treat your sales as being zero-rated exports or if you wish to register for VAT in another EU country. Advice should be sought as to the VAT registration requirements in the EU country in question.

Social security from 1 January 2021

The agreement largely follows the EU regulations applied in the lead up to 31 December 2020. Consequently, individuals will only be liable to social security on earnings in one country. The general rule is that social security contributions will be payable in the country where the activities are carried out, often referred to as the country where the employee is habitually resident.

There are special rules for employees who work across Europe, in many different states and employees sent on secondment to work in another state.

Multi-state workers

As mentioned, the rules will generally follow those previously in place before 31 December 2020. The multi-state worker will be liable to pay contributions in the state where they are habitually resident. This will be on the basis that this is where a substantial part of their activities is carried out in that state. The general guidance applied by all countries is that ‘substantial’ means 25% or more of the employee’s activities. Where this is not the case, then social security of the country where the employer is based will apply.

Detached or seconded workers

The detached worker rules will generally remain unaltered from those in place leading up to 31 December 2020.

Where an employee is sent on secondment to work in another EU state, the worker will continue to remain liable to social security contributions in their home country. However, this will be on the basis that:

  • The secondment period will not exceed 24 months in duration
  • The worker is not replacing another detached worker.

Currently there is no guidance as to whether the 24-month period can be extended. Prior to 31 December 2020 it was possible to obtain an extended period of coverage with the worker continuing to pay contributions into their home country system. We will need to see whether this point will be revisited at some point in the future.

However, there is no guarantee that the detached worker rules will apply. This is on the understanding that each EU country must agree to apply these rules by 1 February 2021. Consequently, the position will need to be reviewed for each secondment during these early months of the TCA.

There are special rules which will apply to assignments between the UK and Norway, Switzerland, Iceland and Liechtenstein which started post 31 December 2020:

  • Employees sent on assignment between the UK and Norway will be able to consider a period of up to three years (an application must be made within the first four months of the secondment)
  • Employees sent on assignment between the UK and Switzerland will remain in their home country social security regime for up to two years
  • Employees sent on secondment between the UK and Iceland will remain in their home country social security regime for up to one year
  • There are no special rules in place between the UK and Liechtenstein. Consequently, the ‘rest of the world’ rules shall apply and where the assignment is from the UK, the employee will remain within the UK social security system for the first 52 weeks of their assignment.

Employers must carefully consider and regularly review the position for any employees who are being sent on assignment either to or from the UK and the EU.

Coordinating a global audit

We are the auditors of a UK charity which has six branches and subsidiaries overseas. Each of the overseas components has local auditors in place. Our approach is to:

  • We hold a planning meeting at group level to discuss key develops in the
  • We communicate with the local auditors at the planning stage and provide them with instructions setting out the work required, the timetable and the group assessment of risks.
  • At the planning stage of the audit, as required by the auditing standards, we also make an assessment of the capability and competence of the local
  • We hold an interim audit which focuses on the systems and processes – this includes reviewing and testing the controls over the monthly reporting from the local offices to the UK, including confirming that a monthly checklist is completed and the review is
  • We review the detailed responses to our group reporting instructions from the local auditors, and consider the impact of the findings on our
  • We consider the significant findings arising from the local audits and where significant at a group level we incorporate them into our Audit Findings Report in order to provide the trustees with visibility of key matters at a group
  • We review the consolidation of each of the branches and subsidiaries to ensure that the results have been correctly consolidated, and in particular that any differences in Generally Accepted Accounting Practice have been appropriately reflected.

COVID-19 and working from home when your ‘home’ is outside the UK

For those who: work in the UK for a UK employer; have been working from home (perhaps since March); or who have left the UK for their second jurisdiction to work for an extended period, it’s important to look carefully at their UK tax position versus the second jurisdiction’s tax position to ensure they are taxed correctly.

At first glance, it seems so simple. They work for a UK employer who deducts UK Income Tax at source under PAYE rules. However, when factoring in an extended period abroad, the terms of the relevant DTT that would usually avoid any cross border issues suddenly don’t help, meaning there is a need to understand how the DTT applies to ensure things are right first time and they don’t suffer unnecessary tax, penalties and/or interest in both jurisdictions.

Take the simple example of Ms. Smith, originally from Country Y (which has a DTT with the UK) but who has lived in the UK for a few years working for City Ltd. In March 2020, she was told to work from home and she decided to return to Country Y to carry out those duties, remaining there since. As it’s now well past 5 October 2020, she has been in Country Y for over 183 days in the 2020/21 tax year and is now treated as a ‘resident’ in Country Y under their own rules. She continues to satisfy the UK’s residence tests.

Despite being a resident in both the UK and Country Y for 2020/21, she is still treated as a UK resident for the purposes of the DTT. However, where the DTT would normally result in her UK earnings being taxable only in the UK, because she has been in Country Y for at least 183 days this special relief cannot apply and so she is taxable in Country Y on the proportion of her earnings that relates to the time she has worked in Country Y.

The lesson here is to make sure you liaise with suitable tax advisors to avoid pitfalls. Your employer may also have payroll reporting responsibilities in Country Y, and in some countries there is no de-minimis and payroll reporting is required from day one.

If you have any questions about DTT, please contact James Walker or your usual haysmacintyre contact.

Overseas expansion

Overseas expansion was a challenge for the family-owned company with deep French roots. Overseas markets, in particular, can present cultural, fiscal and regulatory difficulties for businesses without specialist local knowledge.

With those challenges in mind, the French company asked haysmacintyre to support its international expansion in the UK.  The French company needed a partner who was well connected internationally to guide them through the expansion phase.

haysmacintyre was appointed to carry out a financial and tax due diligence on the UK target company.  The client was impressed with our knowledge in the Creative, Media and Technology sector, our drive and attention to detail, alongside an obvious desire to build long-lasting relationships.

The result was that the French company was able to negotiate a lower price for the acquisition following our due diligence exercise and at the same time drive its expansion objective.  haysmacintyre was fully involved in the transaction helping to create an atmosphere of transparency that ensured a smooth and seamless acquisition.