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Changes to Companies House checks in 2024

Until now, the Companies House registry has passively received the information that UK companies filed – but new reforms will implement a more active role for Companies House as a regulator to better maintain the register’s integrity.

Since the Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act (ECCTA) was passed into law in October 2023, the changes in the Act will begin to take effect in 2024.

There are several new measures that aim to clamp down on financial crime and improve the reliability of corporate data, which should help to make it easier to do business in the UK and support economic growth.

So, if you have a registered company, limited liability partnership (LLP), or limited partnership (LP) in the UK, these measures will affect you from 4th March 2024.

Is there a ‘side hustle’ tax on selling secondhand goods?

The start of this year saw a media storm around rumours that HMRC would be cracking down on online sellers in 2024, spreading concern amongst people who sell personal items and secondhand goods on sites like eBay, Depop, and Vinted.

However, the stories about a new ‘side hustle’ tax were completely false, fuelling unnecessary panic for the public and unfounded outrage against HMRC.

Here’s what is actually happening with income tax for sellers on digital platforms.

How increased income can affect tax reliefs

While most people welcome increased income, it can be a double-edged sword, resulting in more than just a higher income tax bill. With tax bands frozen for several years, higher rate taxpayers should be looking at which reliefs are still available to them.

The new tax year in April will bring reduced allowances and frozen thresholds, so it’s essential to check whether a pay rise will affect the reliefs you’re entitled to as well as the rate of income tax you’ll pay, so you can keep your personal finances in order.

Making Tax Digital review for small businesses

Under the government’s original plans, anyone required to submit Income Tax Self-Assessment returns to HMRC would have been obligated to sign up for the Making Tax Digital (MTD) service by April 2024 – but the implementation of MTD for ITSA has since been delayed until April 2026.

Switching to the online tax service will initially be mandatory for landlords and self-employed earners with income over £50,000 a year, while those with annual income below this but above £30,000 will be required to join from April 2027.

Before setting a deadline for extending MTD to smaller businesses earning less than £30,000 a year, the government conducted a review to consider how this might affect the needs of small businesses.

The outcome of the MTD small business review is the announcement that there are no plans to extend MTD for ITSA to landlords and the self-employed earning below £30,000 a year for the foreseeable future – though this may be reviewed again.

Here’s a short guide explaining what self-employed workers and landlords should know about current changes to MTD for ITSA.

New lease and property listing rules for landlords

From Property Alerts for fraud prevention, to energy efficiency requirements for rented properties, to Making Tax Digital for Income Tax delays – it’s essential for landlords to keep up with the latest regulatory changes.
For example, the Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill was introduced in Parliament last November and is likely to be passed into law in mid-2024.
Also in November, the National Trading Standards Estate and Lettings Agency Team (NTSELAT) published two more sections of guidance for sales agents and letting agents regarding ‘material information’ in property listings.
Here’s what these changes could mean for landlords when it comes to advertising a property or extending a lease in 2024.

New ISA rules from April 2024

Following announcements made in the Autumn Statement 2023, new rules will come into effect for individual savings accounts (ISAs) from April this year.

Since launching in 1999, ISAs have offered an excellent route for building up tax-free savings, with different options and regulations introduced over the years.

Allowing savers to set aside ad-hoc sums up to an annual allowance, sheltered from income tax and capital gains tax, it’s no wonder that ISAs are so popular.

Now, changes coming into effect on 6th April 2024 to make ISAs more user-friendly will also make them even more attractive to more people hoping to build their savings – but there are some limitations to be aware of.

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