Very difficult for tax practitioners to consider wider options for 2018 when they are swept back into the self-assessment crazy season with a vengeance when they return from the Christmas break. Back to the relentless chore of chasing for information before the submission button can be pressed.
Come 1 February, when the air clears and it may just be possible to see the wood for the trees, what are the pressing milestones we need to set up for the rest of 2018?
The first order of action is likely to be completing tax planning reviews, for those clients who are receptive, before the end of March. In some respects, this is a service that is easy to sell, but only if there are quantifiable benefits.
Practitioners will also need to consider the impending GDPR deadline, 25 May 2018. This is the date by which all businesses need to comply with the new regulations if they process personal data, and of course, accountants do and in abundance.
And Making Tax Digital has not completely disappeared from the radar. By 5 April 2019, VAT registered traders will need to be using software that can link with their HMRC online tax account, otherwise they will not be able to file in accordance with the published MTD regulations. Practitioners will need to work with relevant traders still off the “computerised” grid to achieve their MTD obligations.
The political situation is far from clear. Will we see a change in government? Will this mean an about face on significant issues and yet more milestones to set?
All in all, plenty to think about.