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Finance

What’s your Lockdown story?

At a recent networking event, I heard someone explain what their company did and didn’t do during lockdown.  This started us thinking as to what we did and didn’t do at WCL over that period and we would like to share these with you. 3 things we did do: Called (rather than e-mailed) clients regularly to check on how they were ...

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Finance

What does your business look like post Covid?

As lockdown restrictions ease and companies start to see an increase in business; now is the time to plan what the next few months and even years start to look like. Decisions made in the next few months could have far reaching consequences. The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) and the Bounce Back Loan (BBL) have b...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#15 GET ADVICE Of course we would say that wouldn't we! Yes, but we are often met with the phrase "I wish I had spoken to you first". You don’t have to spend a fortune on advice. Whoever it is you want to engage with, that professional adviser's review of your contract can give you great peace of mind. They can: point out the...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#14 TURN YOUR CONTRACT INTO AN ASSET Think of the contract as a strategic tool to protect your business and manage risk. In our prior blog about negotiating contracts we set out key clauses to include. These are central to managing risk in your business. However, it can also be a positive asset as well. Why not use it is a marketing to...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#13 ALWAYS REVIEW, NEVER FORGET Following on from our post about understanding the contract, it is just as important to review contracts as well. They are not a one off; they should almost be thought of as fluid. Why? Even if you have a very detailed scope of work, clients tend to ask you to add services. Don’t be afraid to upd...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#12 IS MY CUSTOMER BOUND? How do you ensure your customer knows they are bound by your contract terms? It is frustrating when someone says they are not subject to the contract because they have never seen it. The first step is to send a copy of your contract to your customer or certainly tell them where to find them. If you email co...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#11 DO NON COMPETES REALLY WORK? Non-compete clauses (also known as restrictive covenants) are commonly found in employment contracts. They are also used in many other business relationships. They are designed to prohibit third parties from offering business to the marketplace in competition with you. Provided they are appropriate a...

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Employment Law, Finance

New National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage increases and what you need to do

The national minimum wage applies to anybody that has reached the school leaving age, with the national living wage applying to those aged 25 and over. The current rates along with the new rates are below: Year 25 and over 21 to 24 18 to 20 Under 18 Apprentice April 2019 (current rate) £8.21 £7.70 £6.15 £4.35 ...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#10 SHOULD I BE EXCLUSIVE? Exclusivity in a contract will mean you are the only supplier supplying that particular service or product to the customer. If you are the supplier, this is great. It means you know there will not be anyone else there to compete for the potential orders the client makes. Plus, it can create customer loyalt...

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Company, Finance

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme – some top tips

Here at WCL clients have been asking for assistance with regard to their applications for the Government's Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). Here are a few pointers as to what we see banks needing ahead of granting a loan under the government’s CBILS: They will only lend to businesses that can pay the money ...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#9 DON’T LOSE THE LEGALESE Legalese can look complicated and is not always easy to understand. However it is included in contracts for a reason. It is a technical language. It has been developed to summarise and provide standard wording for contract issues which have arisen historically. Contract law has taken centuries to evol...

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Uncategorised

COVID-19 – Latest update on Job Retention Scheme

Latest guidance on the Government's Job Retention Scheme has been published. Please click on the link below: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme  Headlines are: 1. Scheme open to anyone who had PAYE scheme in place from 28 February 2020. So new hires after that point will n...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#8 WHO IS THE CUSTOMER? Have you used the right contractual terms for the right customer? Contracts can look very different dependent on who the ultimate customer is. Business to business contracts (B2B) will likely use quite harsh language and look to for example limit liability to maximum levels possible. Business to consumer cont...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#7 CLEAR LANGUAGE, CHECK THE GRAMMAR There is no requirement to have complicated and archaic language running through a contract. It confuses and frustrates people. Language in the contract should where possible be kept simple and clear. Legalese is still an essential part of contracts. So whilst the language can be confusing, it is...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#6 CHECK WHO YOU ARE CONTRACTING WITH Have you entered into the contract with the right person? Often clients make a presumption about the business name. It is very important to ensure you are contracting with the right entity. Without the correct name in the contract, when it comes to trying to enforce it particularly if you don’...

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Company, Employment Law, Finance

IR35 – the new regime

What is it? IR35 are tax rules which to try and prevent workers/contractors who claim to be self-employed benefitting from better rates in relation to income tax and national insurance. In essence HMRC are targeting those individuals, who but for the intermediary (usually a company) through which they offer their services being in pla...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#5 DON’T RUSH – TAKE YOUR TIME TO NEGOTIATE – 2 As previously mentioned it is important to understand what your contract says. So take your time to review the document so you can determine what you definitely want to include in the contract, what you definitely don't want to see and areas where there is scope for movement. Key...

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Finance

The Power of Profit & Loss Analysis

When it comes to financial reports there is no other report that is more anticipated by business owners, directors and senior leadership teams than a profit & loss report. It’s the report that lets them all know if all their efforts are paying off in the form of a profitable business. Analysis: If the gross profit and the bottom l...

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Company, Finance

We’ve moved!

And we are in.... We are excited to announce that we are now in our new office premises. The new address is Unit 4, Corum 2, Crown Way, Warmley, Bristol, BS30 8FJ. We quickly outgrew our old premises and are now looking forward to seeing our increasing client base in more contemporary offices. We would like to thank in particular ...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#4 DON’T RUSH – TAKE YOUR TIME TO NEGOTIATE - 1 Contracts should never be entered into on a last-minute basis. You may be desperate to get going because you have just landed your largest client; however, rushing can sometimes force you into signing something you later regret. Wherever possible do not start work without a contract i...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#3 UNDERSTAND YOUR CONTRACT You may have the best contract. It has been professionally written and it is absolutely watertight! However, if you don't understand even the basic terms you are unlikely to be using the contract in the best possible way. If you understand your contract and can talk in confident terms about your contract;...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#2 GET IT IN WRITING! Contracts are either verbally agreed or they are written. Some people prefer to do deals on a handshake. Sometimes due to timings this is the only way to make the agreement work. This does require a lot of trust. Further if it goes wrong, when you end up in court the arguments will simply centre round “he sai...

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Company, Company Secretary

TOP CONTRACT TIPS

#1 WHY HAVE A CONTRACT? A contract sets out the relationship between two (or more) parties creating legal obligations for them to perform. The reason you have contracts is to provide clarity in the relationship. This can help avoid needless litigation and prevent misunderstandings. If the contract is clear on matters such as the sco...

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Company, Finance

New Year, New You?

Christmas time allows people to take stock of which direction their careers are heading.  For those amongst you who are thinking about going it alone in 2020, here at WCL we are brilliantly placed to cover off the things you need to know from both a legal and accounting perspective in setting up your own business. According to officia...

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Finance

Xero Silver Partner

It's official! We have just been awarded Xero Silver Partner status. Well done to the team on achieving this in such a short space of time. https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6619910813991882752/    ...

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Finance

Are you looking at the whole picture?

One of the strengths of WCL is ensuring clients to get a better grasp of all their numbers at any point in time. There are traditionally three main financial statements that any business owner should aim to understand.  These are: Profit and Loss Account Cashflow Statement Balance Sheet We find that clients are well vers...

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Employment Law

Employment law, is it such a headache?

Whether you are a first-time employer or an established business with several employees, trying to keep up with the requirements of employment law can be at times feel like walking through a minefield. Below are some simple steps to take to help give you confidence that you can navigate through that minefield! Who is responsible? Rev...

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Finance

How to make a cup of tea?

We will start this blog post with a very simple question “How do you make a cup of tea?” That’s an easy one you may say. There are simple steps and order in which you must do things: 1. Fill up the kettle with water 2. Boil the kettle 3. Place a teabag in your favourite mug 4. Pour boiling water into your favourite mug 5. Brew ...

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Finance

Finance Business Partnering and the benefits

Businesses today are seeking more from the people who handle their accounts above just the delivery of the numbers. Whether that is from an in house or outsourced finance team via an external accountant. Historically the statement of profit and loss has been the primary deliverable from such finance teams. Business owners and management t...

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Company, Company Secretary, Finance

Is it time to invite a new shareholder into your business?

Many businesses owners will find themselves in situations where they want to invite new shareholders into their business. This can be new investors, business partners or key employees in an organisation. This is exciting however business owners should have the following three practical considerations in mind: Control If you are the majo...

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Finance, Uncategorised

Making Tax Digital – ready to go?

Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT commenced in April 2019. The first VAT quarter to be affected by the new regime is for the quarter ending 30th June and this is due for filing by 7th August. Are you ready to go? We are... Whittock Consulting Limited is both Xero partner and Xero MTD certified. If you would like any assistance with t...

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Company Secretary, Finance

New Opportunity!

We have a new opportunity to join our team! Due to our rapid expansion, we have created the new role of part time office administrator to provide support to our team. The role will be varied and require someone who is adaptable and able to manage their own workload and ensure that deadlines are met. The role will be part time, 9am t...

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Finance

The Problem with Payroll

Let’s face it, if there’s one thing you need to get right as a business owner, it’s payroll. I mean how would you react if you weren’t paid the right amount come payday? Exactly. Getting payroll right is absolutely fundamental to maintaining trust and a positive, confident workplace. Unfortunately, while payroll sounds as if it...

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Company, Finance

Making Tax Digital for VAT – Update

After much publicity, Making Tax Digital for VAT finally took effect on April 1st, and the new rules require most VAT registered businesses with a taxable turnover over £85,000 to maintain digital VAT records and to submit their VAT Returns using MTD for VAT compatible software. However, as with all things tax the devil is very much in ...

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Finance

We Are Hiring!

We are looking to recruit an Accounts Senior, based here at our offices in Saltford.  The details of the role are: Purpose of Role Preparation of limited company year-end accounts (FRS102 and FRS105) and associated corporation tax returns up to Manager Review stage using TaxCalc Preparation of client VAT returns, agreement wit...

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Company, Company Secretary, Finance

The benefits of terms and conditions

Running your own business is tough. It demands time, energy and commitment, and inevitably there is always something else that needs to be done. As a business owner, you therefore have to prioritise, which can sometimes lead to a focus on service delivery with administrative tasks slipping down the to-do list for later. However, the...

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Finance

And in the beginning there was SAGE …

Modern, cloud-based accounting software like XERO can transform your business and offers you a solution if you are worried about the arrival of Making Tax Digital for VAT on April 1st. But choose carefully, plan ahead and invest in your new software ... Maybe you set-up in business to follow your dreams and to do the thing you love. O...

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Employment Law, Finance

Welcome to the gig economy

The world of work has changed, and we are starting to live in a gig economy in which temporary positions are common and workers are engaged for short periods or on a piecework basis, often under complex working arrangements. Such arrangements can benefit all parties. However, they are in contrast to the traditional job and employment con...

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Employment Law, Finance

So, what’s Phil done for you?

It's been a couple of weeks now since the Chancellor delivered his budget speech, confidently announcing an end to austerity and outlining the government’s spending plans for the coming year along with a range of supporting tax and other measures. Generally, the speech was well received although it has been pointed out that, should the...

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Finance

Self Assessment – Don’t be an ostrich!

Business owner, self-employed or company director? Then don’t forget that the deadline for submitting your Self-Assessment return is just around the corner. Paper returns for the year to April 5th 2018 are due later this month. Online returns are due by the January 31st 2019, and any tax due needs to paid by this date as well. Rem...

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Finance

Are you ready for Making Tax Digital for VAT?

What is Making Tax Digital for VAT? Making Tax Digital for VAT is perhaps the most significant change to VAT law in recent history and reflects the government’s commitment to ‘the digital revolution’ and ‘to transform tax administration so it is more effective, efficient and easier for taxpayers’. From April 1 2019, VAT reg...

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Finance

New Accountancy Vacancy With Client

A client has asked us to post the following job vacancy for them: Role:                                      Company Accountant (FT or PT) Reporting to:                      Managing Director Salary and Bens:               £33,000 to £35,000 per annum (pro ra...

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Company, Company Secretary, Finance

Sole trader or limited company?

Maybe you have been trading as a sole trader for a while, or maybe you have just got your new business idea down. Either way, you are wondering about how being a sole trader compares to trading as a limited company. Here are some of the things you should be thinking about…. Personal risk This is a biggie. As a sole trader you are the ...

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Employment Law

Using Contractors?

So, business is booming, and you need help to deal with the increased workload which has reached a critical mass. However, rather than take on more employees – you’re not quite ready for that yet –  you decide to outsource work to sub-contractors. Of course there are plenty of good reasons to go down this route. Greater flexibi...

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Company Secretary, Finance

Setting up a new company?

Setting up a new business is incredibly exciting, and a key part of the process is deciding on whether you should set up as a sole trader, a limited company or a partnership. Each vehicle has its own pros and cons however in practice most businesses ultimately decide to create a new company by filing a form IN01 with Companies House. ...

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Finance

Bookkeeping – When does it become accounting?

You will find bookkeepers hard at work in every industry and sector. They are essential to every business. However, whilst there are many excellent bookkeepers, the truth is you do not need a formal qualification or a minimum level of experience to call yourself a bookkeeper. So, have you ever wondered about how thorough your bookkeepe...

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Company Secretary

Director’s Duties – are they important?

Many directors when appointed just want to get on with the business of running their company. They want to be creative and entrepreneurial. However, directors are responsible for the day to day management of their company. They are therefore subject to a number of checks and balances particularly those contained in legislation and whilst ...

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Company Secretary, Finance

“So…what is it you really do??”

I have been to numerous networking events over the past few months and when giving the usual 60 seconds it has really made me think what we offer here at WCL. We are not your traditional accountancy firm; although we have Chartered Accountants working for us we do not do year end statutory accounts or audit, which tends to be the bre...

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Company Secretary

Benefits of a Shareholder’s Agreement

Can you answer the following questions? a. Do you know what your internal company rules are in relation to a share sale? b. Do you have a mechanism to value your shares? c. In what circumstance can you force a shareholder to sell? d. Do you know what happens to shares if a shareholder dies? If the answer is no, you should r...

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Company Secretary, Finance

Congratulations!

We would like to congratulate our very own Sarah Whittock on passing her recent exams. To add to her list of qualifications (and just so she can have a few more letters after her name!!), Sarah undertook the Certificate in Company Secretarial and Share Registration Practice. This is a recognised qualification from the Institute of Charter...

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Employment Law

Half yearly round up – Employment Law

As ever there have been several employment law changes already this year with which to keep up to date. Below is a summary of the headline changes: Despite Brexit the EU directive General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will come into force in May 2018. Whilst this may seem a long way off employers are being advised to review their...

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Finance

Not all Part-Time FD’s are the same!

Firstly, let me explain what a part time FD is, as it is not a role that everyone is familiar with. In a nutshell, a part time FD is a role that all businesses could benefit from if they aren't large enough to warrant the expense of a full time one. Improved management reporting, forecasting, strategic direction, banking relationships ...

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Company Secretary, Finance

Change to Persons of Significant Control (PSC) Notifications with Companies House

From 26 June 2017 the requirements for filing PSC notifications will change. The change to the filing requirement is as a result of updates to UK anti-money laundering measures. So rather than updating the PSC register on an annual basis via the confirmation statement, companies will be required to file the requisite form within 14 days o...

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Company Secretary, Employment Law, Finance

WCL’s new offices!

We are all delighted to report that we have moved into bigger offices to allow for further expansion of the company. Following a series of successful new hires, the time has come to finally take the plunge and we are looking forward to continued growth through 2017-18. WCL now has the capacity to provide a wider spectrum of accounting ...

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Finance

We are hiring!

We are looking for an apprentice who would like to develop a career in accountancy. Please click the link below to see more information: https://www.getmyfirstjob.co.uk/Search/Jobs.aspx?id=62694...

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Employment Law

Dress Codes in the workplace

Dress codes in the workplace have recently hit the headlines. In December 2015 Nicola Thorp was sent home from her role as a receptionist with large accountancy firm PWC because she refused to wear heels which would have damaged her feet. As a result of her online petition, dress codes became the subject of consideration by two Parliament...

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Finance

Is your company growing?

As I sat back over the festive break and reflected upon what has been a record year for WCL, I thought I would share some of the success that our clients have also enjoyed in the last 12 months. One of the strengths of WCL is to assist companies to grow and having pulled up some sales stats for our Top 6 clients the last calendar year,...

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Finance

Shoebox Accounts

Are you feeling overwhelmed by the mountain of paperwork involved in running a business? Do you have a box overflowing with paperwork that needs to be cleared? The records that need to be kept can be daunting especially when your focus and efforts are on managing your business, be it looking after customers, dealing with suppliers and all...

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Employment Law

Two new employment law decisions

Two interesting decisions have been recently reported, one relating to shared parental leave and the other to holiday pay: Shared Parental Leave The first case looking at shared parental leave has been determined by an employment tribunal in Scotland. This was the case of Snell v Network Rail. Mr Snell and his wife both worked for N...

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Finance

Whittock Consulting now offers Bookkeeping service

We are excited by the ability to now offer clients a fully comprehensive bookkeeping service, which should allow owner managers to concentrate on their own tasks in hand, safe in the knowledge that the numbers are being taken care of. No matter how large your company is, the need for accurate and timely financial information is key and...

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Company Secretary, Employment Law, Finance

Captains Charity AM-AM at Saltford Golf Club

We had a thoroughly amusing day at the Captains Charity Am-Am at Saltford Golf Club. The sun shone, the company was lovely and the golf at times was great! Whittock Consulting entered two teams. In the "A" team were Sarah Whittock, Neil Maddocks from Undebt Limited, Fidel Beauhill from Legally Secure and Graham Sneddon from Sneddon Fi...

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Finance

What are the benefits/purpose of management accounts?

When you are busy running your business, why then spend time preparing management accounts? How do they actually help your business? Is it time well spent when you could be running other areas of your business? Other than needing to produce statutory accounts, why then produce more financial information? Management accounts can help...

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Company Secretary

What are the benefits of terms and conditions?

Many businesses use standard terms without really considering how useful they are or even considering if they are appropriate to their business. More often than not these terms are either taken from elsewhere or even verbal arrangements are entered into. Both scenarios bring with them their own problems. Why use terms and conditions? ...

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Company Secretary

What does a Company Secretary do?

For private companies it is no longer necessary to have a company secretary unless their Articles of Association require them to do so. Has the role really disappeared? The usual duties the company secretary will undertake include: the maintenance of the company statutory books; ensuring the right documents are filed with Co...

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Finance

Did you truly enjoy your holiday?

As owner managers and directors start to come back from their well earned summer break, how many of them could not avoid thinking about work pressures? Running businesses is not easy and following recent events such as Brexit, wildly fluctuating exchange rates and talk of negative interest rates here in the UK things are not going to g...

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Company Secretary

The PSC Register – a new requirement

The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 has introduced several new measures and the requirement for the PSC Register is one of them. What is the PSC Register? PSC stands for People with Significant Control, these are people who will have control over a relevant entity. The Register will identify and record the peop...

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Employment Law

Zero Hours Contracts

The use of zero Hours contracts is on the rise. In essence a Zero Hours contract is a casual agreement for employment between an employer and an individual. Why are they so controversial? There is no requirement on the employer to guarantee work for the employee. The work is offered as and when it arises. Usually the employee is exp...

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Company Secretary, Finance

What profit are you really making?

There has been a lot of discussions recently regarding the change in tax rates and rules on dividends.  The government has decided to increase the rates from 0% to 7.5% for basic rate tax payers and from 25% to 32.5% for higher rate tax payers, along with doing away with the old dividend tax credit rules.  At Whittock Consulting, we ...

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Employment Law, Finance

National Living wage

From April 2016 the Government will be introducing the mandatory National Living Wage for workers aged 25 years and over. The mandatory rate is set at £7.20 which is a rise of 50p relative to the current National Minimum Wage for workers of that age. The National Minimum Wage will continue to apply for those workers aged 21 – 24 and 18...

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