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Does a financial advisor have a duty to disclose information to the revenue?

(32 Posts)
taxattack Tue 11-Dec-12 11:42:26

I'd like to sort out tax returns which I've been lazy in dealing with. Would like to discuss with my financial advisor but wonder if he might have any professional obligation to disclose information to the revenue.

I'd rather sort it out rather than have the revenue come knocking which I seem to think would have worse financial implications. Am I correct in thinking this would be the case?

notactuallyme Sun 16-Dec-12 08:47:08

I would recommend (biased!) That you find an accountancy practice with a tax department staffed by people with tax qualifications. Not necessarily a big name, just a local one. This isn't an uncommon scenario.

ChablisLover Sun 16-Dec-12 09:46:15

I agree with notactually

You need an someone with tax experience so a firm with a dedicated tax department is what you need.

Not necessarily big firm though

All tax professional should be up to date and most if not all will have had dealings with revenue investigations as they are becoming increasingly common.

MrAnchovy Sun 16-Dec-12 17:10:59

"...a firm with a dedicated tax department staffed by people with tax qualifications"?

For some backdated returns covering PAYE and rental income, a covering letter of mitigation to HMRC and advice on whether it is worth appealing any penalty imposed?

How much do you think that sort of firm would charge compared to a sole practitioner/small accounting firm that deals with exactly this sort of work every day?

As it happens I am a member of the Chartered Association of Management Accountants but I haven't recommended the OP searches for a CIMA m]ember: it would be bad advice because:

1. like the CIOT there aren't many of us about in practice, most accountancy firms are member firms/practicing members of either CACA or ICAEW (or ICAS in Scotland), but

2. like the CIOT, CIMA is a specialist qualification; many of its members focus their work on specialist areas and are less experienced in and/or charge more for routine work than accountants with a more general practice;

3. searching for an accountant on a member list is a very bad way to find one - personal recommendation is best, failing that online forums like this one and UKBusinessForum can be good as you can get to know a few people anonymously before contacting them directly.

Xenia Sun 16-Dec-12 17:18:07

Also check (and you can do this free on line not pay someone) you claimed all you could in the earler years eg I think 10% of rent as depreciation to set against the rent so in the years you made no gains you may have accumulated losses including that kind of allowance so that you add all those years of losses up and set them against the years when you think you have made a gain.

Also if this is your husband's issue why do you need to bother with it at all? You have no liability for this at all. It's for him to sort out and him to pay any back tax due if any.

MrAnchovy Sun 16-Dec-12 23:17:36

Is it reasonable to assume to most accountants dealing with personal taxation will be up to date with the nuances related to rental income eg tax breaks?

Do ask if they are but most will be unless they specialise in a particular area (some firms only deal with builders, or limited company contractors etc.)

Also wonder if better to use someone accustomed to dealing with tax investigations?

This isn't an investigation is it? Even if HMRC call, the first stage will be an "enquiry" where you will get the chance to make a "prompted" late return. Only if they are still not happy will there be an investigation so these are relatively rare; I haven't had one for a rental client so I would use specialist back-up in the unlikely event it got to this stage.

I picked up on the internet that there is some sort of amnesty on tax at the moment.

If you are thinking of the Tax Return Initiative this ended a couple of months ago. The current so-called "amnesty" is for home improvement tradesmen.

Forgive me if questions seem naive - seems that there are a lot of accountants out there who belong to various bodies and who do/specialise in many different areas.

I can understand your confusion, my profession is a mess sad However probably 95% of small firms do this kind of work every day.

ChablisLover Mon 17-Dec-12 00:26:10

Mr anchovy

I work for a small firm ( there are 5 staff) and it has a dedicated tax department (me!) so it really does depend on the firm.

Op - a good recommendation perhaps from a friend or go to see a
Local firm.

This is not a difficult situation but it will need to be sorted out. If you have a return to make this year, do it as soon as possible as there are automatic penalties which cannot be mitigated for late returns.

notactuallyme Mon 17-Dec-12 07:03:30

chablis that's the set up I had in mind, I just remember that some accountant friends had limited tax experience, just as I had limited accountancy experience (began and ended with sole trade income and expenditure accounts!)

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