Contractor accountants: when it’s time to check with the experts

You’re a dark horse. A limited company contractor who does their own accounts – talk about skills to pay the bills. Because if you can do the job, why pay someone else to do it? And with contractor accountants costing anywhere between £720 and £1,200 per year, that’s money well saved, right? Well, yes and no.

As many contractors will tell you, the benefits of a hiring an accountant can sometimes outweigh the costs you pay. Here, we’ll show you…

  • If HMRC request a compliance visit

HMRC can carry out checks to make sure a specific tax return or claim is correct – some of these checks are made on a random basis. So make sure you’re good and ready, bring in someone who’s been there and done it before. An experienced contractor accountant knows exactly how to deal with the tax authorities; they’ll help you prepare your business and check everything is up to scratch.

  • When your time is precious

Not enough time in the day? Get a little help. Your contract accountant can help you complete and file your personal and your company’s tax returns with Companies House and HMRC. They can also file confirmation statements and provide specific advice for your business.

  • Need help understanding new legislation

Not into small print or paperwork? That’s okay. Speak to someone who is. A contractor accountant can advise you on new legislation which may affect you and your business, including IR35, Managed Service Company (MSC), Agency Workers Regulations, and Section 660.

  •  Can’t pay your tax bill on time

Firstly, there are different penalties and allowances depending on if you’re late paying your VAT or corporation tax. An accountant can fill you in. They can contact HMRC for you and potentially arrange a payment that suits you.

  • Disagree with a tax decision

You can get in touch with HMRC if you have any questions about a tax decision. However, if you don’t understand the decision, you can also get advice from a contractor accountant. They can take care of the situation and even appeal for you. That’s less legwork for you.

  • If HMRC ask for specific information

Don’t worry, sometimes this is just precautionary. It may even be to your benefit or even save you money. A professional accountant will be best suited to manage any tax enquiries that arise.

  • Avoiding costly tax disputes

A contractor accountant can help ensure you don’t break any tax laws – because there’s a good chance the government will be watching. A good accountant will create an audit trail. This makes it easier for you and the government to see exactly what transactions have taken place over time. It’s just good practice.

Need guidance on a tax dispute? A contractor accountant can help if you’re unsure how to resolve a problem or worried you may be investigated. They can help minimise the stress, disruption and costs of a tax dispute, while guiding you through the process of reaching a solution with HMRC. 

What else can a contractor accountant do?

A contractor accountant can do far more than just compile and submit your accounts and VAT returns, they offer lots of services that can really benefit you and your business.

They can also:

  • Handle your IR35 contract reviews
  • Set up and run your company’s monthly payroll
  • Manage all Companies House and HMRC correspondence
  • Complete your CT600 (corporation tax return)
  • Automate your bookkeeping
  • Offer tax planning and dividend administration advice
  • Provide professional visa and mortgage references
  • Advise on contract specific-law

Why you should hire a contractor accountant

Numbers might not faze you. You may be happy doing your companies accounts. But an contractor accountant can make life a whole lot easier for you. So you get more time to focus on what you really love – running your business. You probably have lots on your plate. By leaving the numbers to the experts, you have one less thing to worry about. Remember, anything that saves you time also saves you money.

Want to discover more?

To find out how a contractor accountant can help you in short or long-term basis, simply get a quote here.