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Best Practice in Credit Control - 26th January 2016 -


Kingsland Receivables – best practice in credit control

Protecting cash flow is a vital element of survival for any business, which is why the national insolvency firm, Kingsland Business Recovery has recently set up its own specialist credit control and debt recovery service company – Kingsland Receivables Limited.

The appointment of credit control expert, Anita Pickersgill, formerly of Aldermore Finance, in October 2015 has further strengthened Kingsland’s expertise in this field. With over 14 years’ experience working at the ‘sharp end’ of debt recovery, Anita is keen to support businesses to improve and manage their own credit control systems.

Anita Pickersgill: “We understand the value of clients and the tricky nature of debt collection but we also know that unpaid invoices can seriously hinder your own business potential. Our aim is to ensure that owner managed businesses are set up with best practice credit control processes in the first place to not only improve their cash flow but also preserve existing relationships with clients.

Our proposition includes transparent and flexible fees whether it’s a fixed cost, commission based or monthly retainer. We are keen to find the right solution to suit clients’ needs with a clear, affordable fee structure – practising what we preach - credit control best practice! ”

Kingsland Receivables also offers services to the Financial Services Sector including Insolvency Practitioners, Banks and Finance Providers providing collectability reports on debt book recovery and debtor day reduction/ledger cleansing proposals for finance applications.

With offices in Bradford, Nottingham and Birmingham, Kingsland Receivables Limited are well placed to cover a large catchment area. To discuss your individual requirements, please contact Anita Pickersgill (Recoveries Manager) on 0333 444 3633 or visit www.kingslandreceivables.co.uk or email enquiries@kingslandreceivables.co.uk

 

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Save thousands on tax before the deadline. - 21st January 2016 -


The government’s recent budget and autumn statements have followed a familiar pattern with attempts to stop tax avoidance. With the new Finance Bill coming into force on 6 April 2016, it attempts to reduce the number of companies abusing the Entrepreneurs’ Relief for personal benefit in a phoenix style operation.

 

Current Law:

Under a normal limited company situation where you make a large profit (i.e £200,000), the shareholder receives this as a dividend and then subsequently would pay tax on the dividend at the higher rate of 45% personally (not to mention the 20% corporation tax the company would have also paid on the profits.) The overall tax paid between the company and the individual on this scenario would equate to approximately £110,000, representing nearly 56% tax paid on the profits.

Normal working example

Profit:                                   £200,000

Corporation Tax:                    (£40,000)

Dividend:                              £160,000

Higher Rate Tax (45%):          (£72,000)

Surplus:                                £88,000

 

However, as an alternative to mitigate the tax liability, on profits of £200,000, the Company settles the 20% corporation tax (£40,000) and then undergoes a process known as Members Voluntary Liquidation (MVL) where the surplus funds are distributed to the shareholder as a capital distribution, allowing the shareholders (with more than 5% shares in the company) to claim 10% Entrepreneurs’ Relief on the entire distribution.

 

Example where Entrepreneurs Relief is applied:

Profit:                                   £200,000

Corporation Tax:                    (£40,000)

Distribution:                           £160,000

Entrepreneurs’ Relief:             (£16,000)

Surplus:                                £144,000

As you can see the tax savings are almost doubled by undergoing this process.

 

Unfortunately, HM Revenue & Customs identified that many Owner Managed Businesses abused the process by continually opening and closing companies to take advantage of the tax breaks and hence a new piece of legislation was required.

 

The New Law:

From 6th April 2016, distributions from an MVL will be subject to income tax at the relevant rates if the following 3 points cannot be satisfied:

1)      The distribution is from a company that is a close company. (A close company is a company with less than 5 shareholders or the directors are also the shareholders)

2)      Within 2 years of receiving the distribution, the shareholder is involved in a similar business or activity.

3)      One of the main purposes of the winding up was to benefit from the tax breaks.  

If these three points are not satisfied, then the shareholder will not be able to claim Entrepreneurs’ Relief on the distribution, instead they would have to pay income tax at the higher rate and so the tax payable at the higher rate as shown above. 

Not Long to go - ACT FAST

The new rules will come into effect on all MVL distributions made after 6th April 2016, so if you would like to take advantage of the existing legislation, you will need to have processed the MVL and the distribution made before 5th April 2016 in order to benefit from the legislation. It may seem a long time until this date, but this will soon creep up and any potential benefits will be lost if nothing has been done by this time.

Please note MVLs are not all about taking advantage of the tax benefits to the shareholders. They are also used to ensure the correct method of distribution to shareholders and to minimise risk and liabilities to the directors in formally closing a solvent company.

Kingsland Business Recovery is well placed to advise, assist and assess whether a MVL is best suited for your company. We have a dedicated team experienced in MVL cases who will be able to quickly assess and undergo the procedure to ensure the best results for the company, directors and shareholders. For further information and a confidential no obligation meeting please contact us on 0800 955 3595.

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A Damp New Year - 4th January 2016


Like every year, the new year brings new beginnings and hope for many individuals and businesses around the country, but this new year has started off on a damp (very damp!) note for many businesses across the north of England. The month of December saw one of the wettest Decembers on record with Carlisle regularly flooding and a disruption to the holiday festivities in Yorkshire and Lancashire saw over 60 severe flood warnings and some severally wet business premises. 

The disruption to many businesses will not just be a short term stress to fix all the damage caused by the water in fact in stems deeper than this as many businesses will not have the capital to be able to reinvest and fix all the problems. Not to mention he emotional heartache caused by the damage which in itself is likely to put off many business owners to go through the torment of in effect setting up again. 

Yes having the capital will be a problem and businesses will have business insurance to cover some of the damages lost however business owners need to consider what the insurance actually covers and most policies will have add on policies like flooding insurance and business continuity insurance. Without these two add ons it is likely the insurance underwriters will not cover in the event of flooding. 

However it is unlikely most standard policies will have an additional flooding insurance add on and so are likely to cover the damage caused by the flooding. 

The bigger concern however will be weather the business continuity insurance is in place as this will be the critical policy. It is likely that this will be an additional product in virtually all policies. This will cover any trading losses while the business is closed during the repair period. This could be a lifeline to many businesses as it will mean the business does not lose out during the renovation period. 

The problem will occur where the policy does not cover business continuity as the renovation and repair work could go into months and without any income, most small businesses - where cash flow is already very tight - will not be able to sustain in effect, no income; resulting in many owners considering their business options and whether it is worth continuing and going through such heartache again.

Some of the worst businesses will be the ones who have experienced flooding in the past where their insurance company may well have paid out on the damage caused in the first floods however it is very unlikely they would have been able to re-insure their businesses against flooding in the future. Now that they have been flooded again the damages caused will need to be covered by their own personal funding. In some cases these businesses will already be cash strapped and finding thousands of additional pounds to repair these issues may be a step too far. 

But what does that mean to the business in general? Any business will have employees, leases, suppliers to pay, possibly a bank overdraft and HMRC liabilities to pay. Without any income businesses will become insolvent and may have to consider their options regarding the company. 

Having spoken to a local caravan business who has been impacted by the flooding and Cashflow issue will no doubt impact them is making the owner consider whether they can afford to setup again and more importantly whether they can sustain a large period of time without an income. Unfortunately the insurance policy in this occasion will not cover business continuity but that said even if it had done the damage is much more than like for like replacement because like this business some of their stock is very unique and finding those types of stock again is very arduous and time consuming. 

As heartless as this may sound suppliers and creditors of businesses being effected may not all be sympathetic to the problem as they also will have cash restraints like all businesses and will want to be paid, adding additional stress to flooded business owners. However all is not lost, business owners can consider insolvency options which also afford time and breathing space to businesses to get back on their feet and be able to pay such creditors. For example where there is a business that can be salvaged but needs the time to re build and get repaid from the insurance may want to consider a creditors voluntary arrangement (CVA) and so allowing the business some breathing space. On the other hand if the business is no longer salvageable or the owner has decided they cannot go through this emotional roller coaster again then maybe a creditors voluntary liquidation is an option whereby the business is formally closed down through an insolvency process and all the companies liabilities will be dealt with through the formal procedure. 

Each business circumstances will be different and so saying that these are the only two options for flooded businesses will be an oversight as both formal and informal insolvency and restructuring option may need to be considered. 

Kingsland business recovery are licensed insolvency practitioners and turnaround management specialists and are able to assist businesses in financial distress. If your business has been effected by the recent floodings and you wish to consider your options contact Kingsland on 0800 955 3595 and speak to one of our specialist insolvency advisors. 

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