Detailed guide: Pay the Soft Drinks Industry Levy (notice 5)

You must submit your return and pay any levy due within 30 days of the end of each reporting period.

You’ll find out how much you have to pay when you submit your return.

Pay the levy

Under regulations 20(3) and 22 of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy Regulations 2018, this section has force of law.

You can pay the levy by debit or corporate credit card, or by online or telephone banking.

Before you pay

After you registered for the levy, HMRC will have sent you a 15-digit reference number, starting with an X.

If you registered online, you can find it:

If you did not register online, you can find it on your registration certificate.

You will need this reference number to make any of the following payments.

Online or telephone banking

Use these details to pay by Faster Payments, CHAPS (Clearing House Automated Payment System) or Bacs (Bankers Automated Clearing System).

Sort Code Account number Account name
20-05-17 40204374 HMRC General Business Tax Receipts

Overseas payments

Use these details to pay from an overseas account.

Bank identifier code (BIC) / Swift code Account number (IBAN) Account name
BARCCGB22 GB86BARC20051740204374 HMRC General Business Tax Receipts

Debit or corporate credit card

You can pay online by debit or corporate credit card, but:

  • there’s a non-refundable fee if you pay by corporate credit card
  • you cannot pay by personal credit card

Claim a levy credit

If you’re claiming a levy credit, and the amount is more than what you owe in a reporting period, it may result in a net credit. You will not automatically get a repayment for this credit. It will be carried over to the next reporting period and will reduce the amount you’ll need to pay for that period.

If you believe you will not have to report and pay for any more drinks in the future, contact HMRC to cancel your registration for the levy and claim any net credit due.

Source: HMRC

Detailed guide: Submit your Soft Drinks Industry Levy return

Use this service to submit your Soft Drinks Industry Levy return if you’re registered for the levy. After you’ve submitted the return, you’ll need to pay any levy due.

Start now

Check what to include on your return.

You’ll need the Government Gateway user ID and password you used when you registered for the levy.

Service availability

HMRC services may be slow during busy times. Check if there are any problems with this service.

Source: HMRC

Press release: Record number of fake HMRC websites deactivated

New figures show that HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) requested a record 20,750 malicious sites to be taken down in the past 12 months, an increase of 29% on the previous year.

Despite a record number of malicious sites being removed, HMRC is warning the public to stay alert as millions of taxpayers remain at risk of losing substantial amounts of money to online crooks. The warning comes as Scam Awareness month, run by Citizens Advice, draws to a close.

HMRC has brought in cutting edge technology to tackle cyber-crime and target fraudsters. However, the public needs to be aware and report phishing attempts to truly defeat the criminals. Today (30 June 2018), ministers are urging people to take action to protect themselves as well.

Genuine organisations like banks and HMRC will never contact people out of the blue to ask for their PIN, password or bank details. So people should never give out private information, download attachments, or click on links in emails and messages they weren’t expecting.

People should forward suspicious emails claiming to be from HMRC to and texts to 60599.

They can also contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 to report any suspicious calls, or use its online fraud reporting tool.

Treasury Minister Mel Stride MP, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said:

The criminals behind these scams prey on the public and abuse their trust in government. We’re determined to stop them.

HMRC is cracking down harder than ever, as these latest figures show. But we need the public’s help as well. By doing the right thing and reporting suspicious messages you will not only protect yourself, you will protect other potential victims.

The most common type of scam is the ‘tax refund’ email and SMS. HMRC does not offer tax refunds by text message or by email.

HMRC has also been trialling new technology which identifies phishing texts with ‘tags’ that suggest they are from HMRC, and stops them from being delivered. Since the pilot began in April 2017, there has been a 90% reduction in people reporting spoof HMRC-related texts.

This innovative approach netted the cyber security team with the Cyber Resilience Innovation of the Year Award in the Digital Leaders (DL100) Awards.

In November 2016, the department implemented a verification system, called DMARC, which allows emails to be verified to ensure they come from a genuine source. The system has successfully stopped half a billion phishing emails reaching customers.

HMRC has also saved the public more than £2.4 million by tackling fraudsters that trick the public into using premium rate phone numbers for services that HMRC provide for free. Scammers create websites that look similar to HMRC’s official site and then direct the public to call numbers with extortionate costs.

HMRC has successfully challenged the ownership of these websites, masquerading as official websites, and taken them out of the hands of cheats.

HMRC is working with the National Cyber Security Centre to further this work and extend the benefits beyond HMRC customers.

Further Information

HMRC has taken a range of action to protect the public from scams including:

  • since June 2017 HMRC requested 20,750 website links to be removed, compared to 16,069 between June 2016 and May 2017
  • during the financial year 2017 to 2018, responded to nearly 1 million phishing referrals
  • since 2016 blocked half a billion phishing emails through DMARC
  • reduced spoofed phishing texts by 90% due to new technology
  • during financial year 2017 to 2018 provided up to date information and support on the GOV.UK website, which was visited 1.4 million times last year

Check GOV.UK for information on how to avoid and report scams and recognise genuine HMRC contact.

The National Cyber Security Centre’s report ‘Active Cyber Defence – one year on’ states that HMRC is consistently the most abused government brand.

DMARC (Domain-Based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance) is the internet standard that is used to allow domain owners to have more control over who can use their email addresses as ‘from’ addresses.

HMRC won the Cyber Resilience Innovation of the Year award at the Digital Leaders (DL100) Awards last week – the premier list identifying individuals and teams leading Digital Transformation in the UK.

Source: HMRC

News story: UK ratifies global treaty to tackle illegal tobacco trade

The UK has ratified an international agreement aimed at significantly reducing the illicit tobacco market, both in the UK and worldwide. The UK is the 40th country to ratify the agreement bringing it into international law.

The World Health Organization’s (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products (The Protocol) provides a blueprint for the regulation of tobacco production and distribution, as well as international cooperation between enforcement authorities.

The Protocol represents a significant move towards a new global standard in tobacco control, with international partners working together to tackle the problem.

In the last 2 financial years alone, HM Revenue and Customs and UK Border Force seized over 2.8 billion illicit cigarettes and over 660 tonnes of hand-rolling tobacco. The Protocol will build on that success by allowing closer working with our international partners to form a global comprehensive tobacco control strategy.

The Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Robert Jenrick, said:

Illicit tobacco costs the UK economy £2.5 billion a year. That is why we are cracking down on this unlawful trade, which denies vital funding for our public services and can lead to health risks.

The introduction of these new global standards will build on our work to make it harder for organised criminal gangs to profit in the future.

Furthermore, this government has a duty to tackle the harm caused by tobacco use, both here in England and overseas, as tobacco use remains one of the single biggest causes of preventable disease worldwide.

The Protocol covers 3 main areas, including manufacture and distribution; law enforcement; and international cooperation.

In depositing papers of ratification the UK has taken the total number of countries that have ratified to 40, which is the trigger point for the Protocol to become international law. The Protocol will now officially come into force in 90 days, which means that all 54 parties will be bound to implement its provisions within 5 years.

Further information

The WHO FCTC is an international treaty designed to reduce tobacco-related deaths and disease. The UK ratified the FCTC in 2004 and is one of 181 parties to have done so. Article 15 obliges the parties to develop a Protocol to tackle the illicit trade in tobacco products. After 5 sessions of an Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB) set up to negotiate the Protocol, consensus was reached on the text in November 2012.

The Protocol was open for signatures at the United Nations in New York from 10 January 2013 to 9 January 2014. The UK signed on 17 December 2013.

The European Union signed the treaty on 20 December 2013 and ratified on 24 June 2014.

Most of the requirements of the Protocol have been in place in the UK for some time as part of our successful tobacco anti-fraud strategy. These include requirements for registration of tobacco factories and licensing for tobacco manufacturing machines.

The licensing of tobacco products manufacturing machinery was the final outstanding requirement in the UK. The government laid regulations before Parliament to achieve this in January 2018.

Ratification further reinforces the UK’s continuing commitment to tackling illicit tobacco and encourages other nations to ratify and implement the provisions. The UK is a target market for illicit product and widespread adoption of supply chain controls, for example, will play a significant role in reducing the supply of legitimate products onto the UK illicit market.

Fifty-two other countries’ including France, Germany, Spain, Brazil and India are parties to the Protocol. The European Union has also signed and ratified and so appear on the list of parties but their instrument does not count as one of the 40 needed to bring the Protocol into force.

Once the Protocol has entered into force, parties will convene for the first session of the Meeting of the Parties. This group has decision-making powers to promote the Protocol and ensure its effective implementation. Those parties that have ratified by 10th July will participate in that first session and will enjoy its full rights.

Under Article 9 of the Protocol, the parties agree to establish within 5 years of the Protocol entering into force, a global tracking and tracing regime for tobacco products. The UK is currently developing a track and trace system as required by the EU Tobacco Products Directive 2014, with an implementation date of May 2019.

Read the full text of the Protocol.

Source: HMRC

Important tax considerations when buying and selling a business

When buying, selling, or even giving away a business, ignoring the tax implications could turn out to be an expensive mistake. Naturally, it’s important for buyers and sellers to approach any transaction process with a clear idea of their own goals and entrepreneurial aspirations. All UK business taxpayers must also remain alive to the reality

The post Important tax considerations when buying and selling a business appeared first on Small Business.

Source: SmallBizUK