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Making Tax Digital comes into effect for VAT registered businesses from April 2019. So if you are affected you’ll need to get yourself set up on an HMRC Compliant Software for Making Tax Digital.
What is Making Tax Digital
Making Tax Digital is the biggest shake-up to the tax system ever. It aims to digitise the entire tax system, with quarterly reporting into HMRC and regular tax payments by businesses AND individuals.
HMRC has estimated that errors and mistakes result in over £9 billion lost taxes annually, a loss they feel they can hugely reduce by making people switch from manual bookkeeping to full digital bookkeeping.
The first to be affected by this are VAT registered business (those are businesses with a turnover of over £85,000).
These businesses will need to submit their VAT returns to HMRC using an HMRC Compliant Software.
Other businesses and people will need to start digitising but the confirmed start dates are on hold (mainly due to the time required on Brexit).
HMRC Compliant Software for Making Tax Digital
Most of the market-leading options for cloud accounting have now been approved by HMRC as officially being compliant for Making Tax Digital. These include:
- Freeagent (get a free trial of Freeagent here)
- Xero (visit the Xero website here)
- Quickbooks (visit the Quickbooks website here)
There is a full list of HMRC Compliant Software for Making Tax Digital on the HMRC website here.
What Do You Need to Keep for Making Tax Digital
Digital Record Keeping means you will need to enter every business transaction onto a piece of software, for example, listing out all the invoices you send out in a list rather than adding them together manually and recording it as a single figure.
You can still keep paper copies of all your records or choose to scan copies in (that part of business record keeping seems to remain unaffected).
Anita is a Chartered Accountant with over a decade of experience taking self-employed business owners from financially confused to business savvy.
She is the creator of the ‘Go Self Employed’ website, which is her corner on the internet where she makes self-employment less terrifying.