29
May

GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018 now in force

The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into force on 25 May 2018, along with most of the provisions in a new Data Protection Act 2018 (including those provisions relevant to processing in the employment relationship). The previous Data Protection Act 1998 has now been repealed. The new data protection laws give people more control about how their personal data is used, shared and stored and they require organisations to be more accountable and transparent about how they use such data.

As well as producing a wide range of new and updated guidance for organisations to assist them with their GDPR compliance, which is all available on its website, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has launched a long-term campaign, “Your Data Matters”, to help people understand why their personal data matters and how they can take back control.

The ICO’s resources for organisations include:

  • Guide to the GDPR
  • More detailed guidance on specific GDPR areas, covering: determining what is personal data; the right to be informed; legitimate interests; consent; documentation; automated decision-making and profiling; data protection impact assessments (DPIAs); and children and the GDPR
  • Data protection self-assessment toolkit
  • GDPR FAQs
  • GDPR myth-busting blogs
  • Lawful basis interactive guidance tool
  • Personal data breach reporting resources
  • Guide to the data protection fee (see below).

The Data Protection (Charges and Information) Regulations 2018 also came into force on 25 May 2018 and they have introduced a new data protection charging structure for data controllers. There is no longer a requirement to pay the ICO a notification fee. Instead, there are three tiers of charges which apply unless all processing undertaken by the data controller is exempt. For very small organisations with no more than ten members of staff or which have a maximum turnover of

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23
May

Give now pay later – what are the settlement rules?

The settlement rules are intended to prevent an individual from gaining a tax advantage by making arrangements that divert his or her income to another person who may be liable at a lower rate of tax or is not liable to Income Tax.

Where a settlor has retained an interest in a property in a settlement the income arising is treated as the settlor’s income for all tax purposes. A settlor can be said to have retained an interest if the property or income may be applied for the benefit of the settlor, a spouse or civil partner.

In general, the anti-avoidance settlements legislation can apply where an individual enters into an arrangement to divert income to someone else and in the process, tax is saved.

These arrangements must be:

  • bounteous, or
  • not commercial, or
  • not at arm’s length, or
  • in the case of a gift between spouses or civil partners, wholly or substantially a right to income.

Planning note

However, there are a number of everyday scenarios where the settlements legislation does not apply. In fact, after much case law in this area, HMRC has confirmed that if there is no ‘bounty’ or if the gift to a spouse or civil partner is an outright gift which is not wholly, or substantially, a right to income, then the legislation will not apply.

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23
May

Can’t afford to pay your tax bill?

HMRC understands that taxpayers will sometimes experience difficulties with paying their tax bill and stress that taxpayers should make contact with them as soon as they realise that there is a problem. This is good advice as burying your head in the sand will only make matters worse.

Taxpayers should contact the Business Payment Support Service (BPSS) for practical advice and guidance. The BPSS was first launched back in 2008 and is available to all taxpayers (not just businesses). The purpose of the service is to provide support to those experiencing a wide range of tax problems.

The service offered by the BPSS depend on individual circumstances but could include:

  • agreeing instalment arrangements if you’re unable to pay your tax on time
  • suspending any debt collection proceedings
  • reviewing penalties for missing statutory deadlines
  • reducing any payments on account
  • agreeing to defer payments due to short-term cash flow difficulties

Any taxpayers that are having difficulties making VAT, Income Tax, National Insurance Contributions, Corporation Tax, and pay as you earn payments can contact the BPSS helpline on 0300 200 3835.

The BPSS will review the issues raised and look sympathetically at providing a practical solution. HMRC will not usually charge additional late payment surcharges in relation to specific arrangements made using the BPSS.

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