Odette Gibson of leading hospitality industry accountants, Volensis, says the pub trade needs to brace itself for more attention from the HMRC.
“By now every pub owner will be aware of their responsibilities under the new Real Time Information (RTI) payroll demands placed on them, but as businesses recognised as having a large percentage of cash handling, they can expect increasing pressure from the HMRC” says Odette.
At the heart or RTI, there’s the drive from the HMRC to ensure they are collecting the right amount of money, as quickly as possible. But this is just a scratch on the surface, according to Odette: “Pubs need to know they are in the firing line right now. As with lenders, it would appear that the HMRC have pubs firmly in the “high-risk” box and I’d urge pubs to ensure their house in in order before they fall under the spotlight.”
Odette added: “I believe one of the big concerns the HMRC have is the fear that pubs, or businesses generally in the licensed trade, are using their money to prop up business through difficult times. This is why we’re seeing more VAT bonds being requested, why RTI is being introduced, and why I believe they’ll be more, rather than less enforcement in our sector – I promise you, you won’t have a minute’s peace. What disturbs me is this recent stance on tax – no one thinks it shouldn’t be paid, but in my opinion the government are using the recent public support for tax collection from big organisations to put in place a system to challenge the morals of the man or woman in the street”.
The new RTI system comes into force on April 6th 2013 and employers will be liable for compliance.
For more information call Volensis on 020 7267 3355
Note: Volensis have over 25 years experience providing accountancy, bookkeeping and pro-active financial management to the Hospitality Industry.
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