Welcome to our FAQ page. If your question is not listed please feel to contact ABK with your query.

1. I want to start my own business and become self-employed, what should I do?

If you want to start your own business and become self-employed, you must register with HM Revenue & Customs, but first make sure you have a National Insurance Number. After the registration, you will receive your Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) and HMRC will set up the right tax and National Insurance contributions records. You should keep your UTR safe because you will need it when completing your Self-Assessment Tax Return.

Contact ABK and we can assist with the administration and ensure all the required forms are completed and filed on your behalf.

2. What are the advantages of being a Sole Trader?

By being a sole trader you do not incur company formation costs and do not have to file annual accounts for inspection, although you will still need annual accounts for completing your Tax Returns. Losses generated by a sole trader can be offset against other income within the tax year.

There are advantages and disadvantages with your trading status and these depend on your business, personal circumstances and business plans.

Contact ABK to discuss your business ideas and proposals to ascertain the most appropriate method of starting your business.

3. Do I have to setup a Limited Company?

No you do not have to setup a Limited Company but, depending on your personal circumstances and business it may be something that would beneficial for you. There are a number of potential advantages in forming a Limited Company and these can be considered as part of your business plan.

Contact ABK at an early stage to help ensure you consider the options and make the correct decision that suits you and your business.

4. How detailed does my business plan need to be?

The more detailed and complete your business plan is the better and you should consider both presentation and content. Your business plan will help you flesh out your idea and bring new ideas and risks to light as you complete it. Taking time to complete a thorough business plan before you start your business will reduce the risk of you missing something and may highlight further opportunities.

A business plan will also be required by your bank and other lenders before they offer you credit, business loans or overdraft facilities. It is important to outline all of the main points to give you and others a clear snapshot of your business idea, or where your business is heading.

Completing the plan will help you think methodically and sharpen your ideas about your business concept. The plan will also enable a stranger to grasp your business idea without getting bogged down in unnecessary details.

ABK can offer advice and guidance and help you compile and complete your business plan. With our assistance what may seem like a daunting task will become an aid to your motivation and play a significant role in getting your business off the ground and ensuring its success.

5. Should I register for VAT?

You may need to register for VAT if you are doing business in the UK as an individual, a partnership, or a company

Registration for VAT is compulsory if your annual turnover exceeds the VAT threshold or you expect the turnover to be higher than that amount in the next 30 days. However, it may happen that your turnover has exceeded the registration threshold temporarily. In that case, you may apply for exception from registration. This applies for entrepreneurs supplying goods or services within the UK.

If you take over a VAT registered business, your VAT taxable turnover over the last 12 months must be added to the turnover of the business you are taking over when checking if the registration threshold has been exceeded. And if you have received goods from other countries in the EU, registration for VAT is compulsory if the total value of the goods acquired has gone over £85,000 in the current year since 1 January.

If you are doing business in the UK but your turnover is below the threshold for registration, you may register for VAT voluntarily.

Please note that you cannot register for VAT if you sell only goods or services that are exempt from VAT or you are not in business according to the HMRC’s definition.

By working with ABK we can advise you and ensure you register for VAT at the correct time.

6. What is a Company Tax Return?

A Company Tax Return is a document which is filed for each accounting period by companies liable for Corporation Tax. A company has to file a return even if it has not made any profit.

7. What is Capital Gains Tax (CGT)?

Capital Gains Tax is a tax you pay when you make a profit by way of selling assets (e.g. shares or property). Your Capital Gains Tax may be reduced by a tax-free allowance and some additional reliefs. There are also some circumstances under which no capital gain tax has to be paid.

8. If I already have an Accountant how can I change and use ABK Cloud Accounting?

Switching accountants is easy and straight –forward. When you decide to switch to ABK Cloud Accounting, we will fully manage the transition and ensure that the handover is seamless. We will take care of everything including contacting your current accountant and explaining you are moving away, drafting a brief note confirming the move, arranging for the transfer of records, obtaining copies of your accounts and tax computations, and notifying HMRC and other government offices that we are looking after your business affairs.

9. What are your fees and do you agree fixed fees?

At ABK Cloud Accounting we are client led and client focused. We are happy to offer fees on a time ledger basis or on a fixed fee basis. In addition we offer clients the option to pay their fees annually via a 12 month standing order and we can discount your fee for advance payment. Paying by standing order means no more large and unforeseen accountancy fees every 12 months.

Naturally if you request additional work outside the original agreement then additional fees will be charged.

10. Can I pay by Direct Debit?

We do not offer direct debit facilities but we can offer fee payment via standing order. This is better for you as the amount is set and agreed for a 12 month period. Naturally if you request additional work outside the original agreement then additional fees will be charged.

11. I need to discuss my accounting requirements. Can you contact me and arrange a free no obligation meeting?

Yes we can arrange a free no obligation meeting with you to discuss your accounting requirements. Please complete our contact form or send a quick email with your contact details to hello@abkuk.com. You can also telephone our office on 0161 825 8068.