Archive for October, 2012

What is a car, commercial vehicle or motorhome for VAT?

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

For VAT purposes it’s important to know the difference between cars and other vehicles. This is because in most cases, VAT-registered businesses can’t reclaim the VAT when they buy a car. But they may be able to reclaim the VAT when they buy a commercial vehicle, motorcycle or motor home.

HMRC have launched a guide that explains the difference between a car, motorcycle, a motor home and a commercial vehicle for VAT purposes. This guide is available from the HMRC website at


Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012

Congratulations to Claire Kennedy, who works in our tax department, she is studying to become a Chartered Accountant and has just passed the last of her CAP 1 exams.  She now goes on to study the first module of her CAP 2 exams, which she will sit next spring.   Everyone at McCleary & Company wishes her every success.

Craigavon Business Forum To Meet 26th October at CIDO

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

The Craigavon Business Forum will meet for its first session of the 2012/13 season on Friday 26th October at 7.45am.  We meet at CIDO Innovation Centre and would welcome new members. The forum is aimed at owner managers from the greater Craigavon area who are interested in learning from and networking with each other.

The forum has run for the last two years and has a loyal and friendly membership but we are always looking for new members.  There is no charge for the first meeting and if you would subsequently like to join, the annual membership is £100 per organisation.  We normally meet on the last Friday morning of the month at 7.45am finishing at approximately 9.00am with breakfast. 

We will be using the first meeting to find out how our members would like to see the forum develop, so come along and bring some
ideas, thoughts and needs for the future. We have had a good couple of years of the Forum but going forward, it needs to provide what you as business people require. – you need to help shape it, so it provides the maximum benefit for you and your business. Next week we want to look at what we will do over the next year and we need your insight.

If you haven’t been before and would like to come, simply email your contact details to so that we can arrange a bacom roll for you!  

There are currently very few opportunities within Craigavon for business owners and key people of influence within business to meet, share ideas, support each other and encourage. We believe there is a place for something like the Business Forum and would like to see it continue to thrive. The more people who attend the Forum the richer it will be for all of us. We would therefore encourage you to bring other business owners with you whom you feel would benefit from the Forum.

CIDO are hosting a Funders Fair drop-in advice and information event on Wednesday 24th October from 10am – 1pm

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

CIDO are hosting a Funders Fair drop-in advice and information event on Wednesday 24th October from 10am – 1pm.   There will be  several finance providers and financial advisory service providers in attendance including

  • SOAR 
  • Enterprise Northern Ireland (ENI)
  • Ulster Bank 
  • Morton Consultancy
  • GrantNet Finder  
  • HALO
  • Federation of Small Businesses (FSB)
  • Invest Northern Ireland 
  • Community Relations Council 
  • Princes Trust 
  • Countryside Agri-Rural Partnership


Date:   Wednesday 24th October 2012
Time:   Drop-in between 10am & 1pm
Venue: CIDO Innovation Centre, 73 Charlestown Road, Portadown, BT63 5PP

For further information contact Nicola Hamill at or 02838 396520

McCleary & Co Welcome New Recruit to Bureau Department

Tuesday, October 9th, 2012

We are delighted to welcome our newest recruit, Beverley Davison, to our Bureau department.  Beverley has many years experience in bookkeeping and is extremely familiar with Sage Line 50.

Our Bureau department provides an outsourced finance function for many of our clients. Our services include Bookkeeping, Payroll (including CIS) and VAT Return completion and on line submission.  It is proving increasingly popular with our clients, as it removes the need for them to employ additional staff and removes the fear of getting things wrong in this increasingly technical world.

If you are interested in these or any other services either contact your client manager on 028 3831 6111 or send an email to


Monday, October 8th, 2012

For anyone who exports their goods to other EU countries it is vital that you ensure your customer has a valid VAT number, if you don’t want an unexpected bill from HMRC. You can verify the validity of a VAT number issued by any EU Member State by using this link, we hope you find it useful. 


Friday, October 5th, 2012

Following the launch of the patent box, HMRC have published a guide advising UK companies about how they can pay less tax on profits generated from their patented inventions. From April 2013, any profits from inventions that are protected by a UK patent will be taxable at a significantly lower rate of corporation tax. The relief will be phased in from April 2013, starting at around 15% and falling to 10% by 2017.

In order to receive the tax break, companies must own or exclusively license-in the patents and must have undertaken qualifying development on them. The much-publicised rate of 10% will not actually apply until 2017. Instead, the tax rate that will apply to qualifying profits in the coming financial year will be 15.2%. The tax reduction will be tapered, so the 10% rate will only apply to 60% of the qualifying profits in 2013/14, rising to the full 100% of profits in 2017. Whist clearly of limited interest to many companies, the size of the tax relief means that all opportunities need to be properly identified.


Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

The clawing back of child benefit in situations where one partner has an income of over £50,000 (in the current tax year) starts on 7 January 2013. Until then, there are plenty of scare stories doing the rounds; what is clear is that the system is likely to be an administrative nightmare if you find yourself caught in this trap.

HMRC admit that no fewer than 1.2 million families are likely to be affected, with no less than 500,000 expected to start having to file an income tax return. Remember, all of this is to merely claw back child benefit through the tax system. If either partner has an income of at least £60,000, there is no child benefit to enjoy. In cases where an income is between £50,000 and £60,000, a muted benefit applies.

Some commentators estimate that over 350,000 mothers who do not work could be hit further. Full time mothers receive national insurance credits towards their state pension as recognition of their responsibilities to care for children under 12. The worry is that, in cases where their partner earns an income of £60,000, these mothers will not claim their child benefit entitlement as it would be clawed back via the income tax bill. This would mean that they would not receive their national insurance credits. The Treasury has denied this, but it would be good to have this confirmed officially!


Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

Pensions Auto Enrolment Starts for the Biggest Employers

The 1st October 2012 sees the start of the implementation of changes to the Pensions Act 2008 and 2011, which requires all employers to automatically enrol eligible employees into a workplace pension scheme and to make contributions into that scheme.

At 1st October 2012 it is extremely unlikely that you will be required to act immediately as only those employers with 120,000 or more employees are obliged to have auto enrolment in place.

 The duty to auto-enrol employees into a workplace pension scheme is to take place at different ‘staging dates’, dependant on the size of the employers PAYE scheme, over the next few years. Small businesses are not required to have an automatic enrolment scheme in place until at least 2015.

 The legislation sets a minimum percentage that must to be contributed in total (i.e. the worker’s contribution, the employer’s contribution and the 1% tax relief) and this minimum will increase gradually between 1 October 2012 and 1 October 2018.

 Further information is also available from the Pensions Regulator at


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