Easter Enlightenment!

April 7, 2014

Apologies for the delay in getting this out to the masses but, as per usual, we have been flying by the seats of our pants here in Somerset. Never a dull day…..April has brought us…..Chicken Pox! Damn you mother nature, but thanks for getting it all over and done with now before they get any bigger. Morwenna got off scot free in comparison to poor Lizzie who has had it viciously. Poor little mite.

So, other than great cures for itchy children, what else have I learnt this month?

Well this month has been the month of the payroll year-end. I was lucky enough to attend one of Ken Gurr’s amazing payroll update courses in Exeter a couple of weeks ago and, as always, surfaced at the end of the day entirely enlightened and enthused by his total genius.

“What did you learn, Jo?” I hear you ask. Well I know it’s not the most fascinating reading however there are some key points that everyone in business need to know so listen up people….

a)      If you haven’t already received your letter from David Cameron you should do any day (!!) in relation to the new EMPLOYMENT ALLOWANCE of £2,000 eligible to anyone in business and running a payroll. The only stipulations are that it’s not a personal payroll (ie nannies, gardeners, home help etc) and that you use it to offset only Class 1 NICs.

b)      There is to be a huge crack-down on SELF-EMPLOYMENT in the workplace, as HMRC are convinced that far too many workers claim this when the facts clearly show employment. The liability will rest with YOU, the deemed ‘Employer’, should they decide that there is a clear employee relationship and you WILL be liable for any PAYE & EE/ER NI owed. If alarm bells have started ringing in your ears then I suggest you give me a shout and we can get you sorted now!

c)       AUTO-ENROLMENT is not just a swear word…it is on its way and sadly it’s looking more and more fiddly the closer we get to staging dates etc. It will not go away (annoyingly) so BE PREPARED and find out now what it means for you and your business. By the sounds of things, for smaller businesses, it is going to be easiest to have your payroll and pension scheme administered together through your payroll software, but don’t be fooled – it is likely to be entirely cumbersome to administer and so get the facts together now to see if outsourcing is the way forward.

I was lucky enough to meet a payroll wizard called Claire Meredith at Zest Payroll Solutions this month – if you have any burning issues or questions in relation to any of the above then I know for a fact she can help. Her email is info@zestpayroll.co.uk and website is www.zestpayroll.co.uk

So who else did I meet on my travels this month?

Using my GROWTH VOUCHER I told you about last month, I have found myself a wonderful business coach called Clive Ozzard from Lumine Development Limited www.lumine.co.uk. Clive has agreed to be my mentor going forward and has already helped me immensely over the past few weeks. HURRAY for the Growth Voucher Scheme!

Last week I was treated to a lovely lunch by Simon & Marc from The Wow Company www.thewowcompany.com who specialise in, among other things, Financial Planning, Pensions and Auto-Enrolment. Marc is my personal IFA and has been a great support over the past few years.

I was also lucky enough to be treated to lunch (yes, in the same week…) by Sian Edmunds of Burges Salmon solicitors (Bristol) last Friday. www.burges-salmon.com . She specialises in Litigation within the Food & Farming industries….a great contact for me and an all-round lovely lady too.

All of my new contacts have agreed to be Associates on my website so watch this space as I’ll be updating it soon. It may be daunting not having my old network but it sure is fun building a new one…!!

Before I sign off for a well-deserved Easter break with both sides of my family (half in Berkshire and the other half on the farm in Cornwall) I would like to take this opportunity to wholeheartedly thank all my current contacts who have kindly referred me business and new clients. I am having an absolute ball and am genuinely humbled at the response my efforts have generated at such an early stage.

On that note I wish you all a very Happy Easter!