Martin G Clarke & Co - Chartered Certified Accountants.
Accounts Preparation
Start Ups
Payroll Bureau
VAT Returns
Book Keeping Bureau
Company Secretarial Services
Sage Training / Resellers
Management Accounting
Fee Protection

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I determine whether a firm of Accountants is suited to my business?
Firstly one needs to ensure that a firm is a member of a recognised Chartered Accountancy body.  Then to consider the strengths of the practice in terms of your particular requirements.  A medium/large business may need the specialist services of a national firm of accountants, whereas a new business or smaller family business may need the more personal relationship that a local firm can offer.

How much do you charge?
During your free initial meeting, we will provide you with an indication of how much the fees will be for the services you require.

What do I need to do when I start-up in self-employment?
When you start working for yourself, you will need to register as self-employed with the Inland Revenue. The Starting up in Business section of the Inland Revenue web site provides full details of how to register and provides details of the main tax and National Insurance issues involved in running a business.  Alternatively, we have the necessary documentation to assist you with registering.

Should I form a limited company or run my business as a sole trader/partnership?
Much depends on the type of operation that you are running and the level of risk that relates to that business if anything goes wrong.  We will advise you on the various intricacies appertaining to both scenarios and the most appropriate way for you to operate your business.

What type of records should I keep? 
This is an area that varies according to the nature of the business and level of activity that it has.  Some businesses need more detailed book-keeping records than others.  It may be that a book-keeping package from one of the proprietary providers is needed; however, in other cases a more simplified system can be used.

Should I be registered for VAT?
If you are in business and your taxable turnover, not just your profit, goes over the registration threshold you become a ‘taxable person’. You must then register for VAT. If you don’t register at the correct time you could be fined and any back duty VAT claimed from you. All goods and services which are liable to VAT at the standard, reduced or zero-rate are called ‘taxable supplies’, whether you are registered for VAT or not. You must register for VAT if:

  • at the end of any month the total value of the taxable supplies you have made in the past twelve months or less is more than the current threshold - £64,000 or
  • at any time you have reasonable grounds to expect that the value of your taxable supplies will be more than the current registration threshold - £64,000 - in the next thirty days alone.

For further guidance read the HM Revenue & Customs introduction to Value Added Tax - Do I need to register for VAT- help me decide

Will the H. M. Revenue & Customs want to see my records?
On occasions a V.A.T. officer may request to visit to ensure that you are keeping adequate records and controlling the V.A.T. correctly.  The Inspector of Taxes may also periodically request to see your records and sometimes will target certain types of business to ensure that the profits being declared are correct.  Both will levy penalties and interest on mis-declarations as appropriate.

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