Making Tax Digital
Making Tax Digital is a new offshoot of the traditional approach used by multinationals and multinational corporations to minimize their tax bill through reduced or complete elimination of their existing tax schemes. The MTD was launched in the UK in 2021 with a view to help multinational companies and individuals to lessen their tax burden by adopting the same approach used by the multinationals but with a twist. Instead of using branch offices in different countries to minimize their tax bill and incur expenses for the services of accountants, this new offshoot of the old system will help individuals to adopt the same principles of minimizing their tax bill by living and working remotely. The guidelines of the MTD have been created keeping in mind the changing needs of multinationals in the ever-changing tax regulations.
The first set of guidelines of Making Tax Digital were released for general users in early 2021. They cover general minimisation of tax bills for individuals and businesses through the use of 'offshore' structures and limited liability. However, the latest edition of the MTD, which covers the period from April 1, 2021 to April 1, 2021, has some major amendments planned for the betterment of the system. Some of these changes have already been made to the original draft of the guidelines released in April. Now it is hoped that this new edition of the MTD will address several issues that have been raising issues for quite some time.
The first major amendment made in the new Making Tax Digital guidelines for the year is that it now provides for multi-country companies to adopt the multi-country technique in order to minimize their tax bill. In earlier years, many accountants used the single company method in order to minimize their tax bill, as this was deemed to be more ethical than the double company method. However, experts argue that using this technique is not as ethical as it was intended due to the fact that one could still double up using the services of a tax practitioner on both sides of the business in order to minimize their tax bill. As such, the new version of the MTD now encourages accountants to adopt the multi-country technique and use it as a means of ensuring their clients do not face any dodgy tax situations in future.
Another important change made in the Making Tax Digital for the 2021 version is that it now recommends the use of vat debits instead of standard debits in order to reduce the tax burden on businesses. The vat debits are debits that are payable directly from the VAT body of the country in which the business operates, but are exempted from Income Tax and National Insurance contributions. The debits are further exempt from Capital Gains Tax and are taxed at a lower rate when paid to the DVT Company. As such, the new version of the MTD encourages businesses to consider using vat debits instead of standard debits if they are planning to avail of special benefits that are accrued by using the debits. This is especially important for businesses that operate in multiple countries because they would save a lot on tax if they adopt this approach.
The Making Tax Digital also recommends the adoption of standard deductions when calculating business expenses incurred during the year. In the previous version of the MTD, businesses had to calculate their expenses based on their personal allowance or an allowance provided by the UK authorities. However, experts suggest that using standard deductions instead should be done if one is able to sense the MTD can now provide companies with an estimate of their potential tax liability on a monthly basis. For businesses that do not expect to face any tax liability on personal items or assets, it would still be better to apply for a standard deduction since doing so can help them save money.
Home Accounting Indicator
Lastly, the Making Tax Digital for the 2021 version features simplified versions of the most frequently used sections of the MTD. These include the Home Accounting Indicator, Home Office Indicator, Corporate and Trade Credits, and the Business Information Technology Indicator. In the previous version, the taxpayers were required to look through hundreds of tables and columns in the MTD to understand which sections of the document refer to which income tax elements. For businesses, this was often very problematic since many of the income tax calculations involved aggregating various sections of the MTD into one statement. Today, all the information that is required can be found in just a few clicks away.
Experts also advise that making tax digital has some significant benefits for both large and small businesses. For small businesses, they say that since the forms can be downloaded at anytime, they can print them immediately when required. Moreover, the MTD can be used on desktop computers so it will not require the downloading of the entire document before being used. For large businesses, making tax digital has several advantages. These include the fact that businesses will no longer have to worry about forgetting to file their annual return because they will be able to file it online immediately after completing their financial reports.
Last but not least, making tax digital has a number of significant benefits for taxpayers. The MTD can help them prepare for the upcoming year, make necessary adjustments to their accounts, and document their tax-free status in real time, as well as reduce errors that may arise in the future. The changes to tax laws for the year 2021, which took effect in April of this year, are also encouraging for those who would like to protect their tax lien or property from foreclosure.