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systems that make running your business easier.


Where are you up to with Making Tax Digital (MTD)

This is an interesting article from ICAS about the Fact and Fiction on Making Tax Digital with some key dates and timing information:


Gall Robertson are delighted to be supporting the Lavender Touch, Wear Lavender to Work day


Held on 26th April 2019 the charity encourages local businesses to do what it says, wear lavender to work and collect donations which go towards their invaluable work supporting those with cancer in the Scottish Borders. At The Lavender Touch, they help to fund a completely confidential service to help people and carers who are struggling with the side effects associated with cancer and its treatment, in the Scottish Borders.

They offer therapeutic treatments, including massages, reflexology, and aromatherapy, through a number of qualified therapists, as well as soothing, moisturising and calming products that are freely available to buy through their shop.

Their services are fully tailored to suit patients’ needs, and have been designed to work alongside cancer treatment from healthcare professionals. This helps to encompass a more holistic approach to dealing with your illness and recovery.

These treatments can be carried out via their therapy room at the Borders General Hospital, your local health centre, or even in your own home whatever makes you feel most comfortable.

As well as dressing in lavender you could have a bake sale, decorate the office or just bring the tin to the attention of your work colleagues. It can be fun and it will make such a difference to people living with cancer right across the Scottish Borders. Just the act of dressing up gets people talking about it, and raising awareness of the charity is a big part of our plans for growth.

It does not matter how large or small your workplace is. You could even link up with other organisations in your building. Everyone can join in. The idea is to wear lavender and donate to the cause.

Phishing emails

We are being contacted by clients about the number of phishing emails from HMRC that are being sent out at the moment.

The advice from HMRC is that you’ll never get an email, text message or phone call from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) which:

Check HMRC’s guidance on recognising scams if you’re not sure.

Reporting suspicious emails, texts or phone calls

You can report something suspicious to HMRC’s phishing team, for example:

If you receive a suspicious phone call, you can help HMRC’s investigations by providing:

HMRC phishing team

Your email address and phone number will be shared with other organisations if that’s necessary to close down the scam.

Reporting a disclosure of personal details

Contact the HMRC security team if you think you’ve given any personal information in reply to a suspicious email or text.

Include brief details of what you disclosed (for example name, address, HMRC User ID, password) but do not give your personal details in the email.

HMRC security team

Rural Financial Recording Course

Are you a farm administrator or bookkeeper working in the UK rural economy?

Our Rural Financial Recording course is appropriate for those working (or interested in working) in the agricultural sector as an administrator or bookkeeper, returning to the sector or looking for a new career in a rural business.

Basic Excel skills are useful for this course but not compulsory.

Dates: The course runs over 3 mornings, 9am-12.30pm on

Thursday 21st February

Thursday 28th February

Thursday 7th March


BMR, Leader House, Mill Road, Earlston, TD4 6DG

Tea & coffee provided.

Cost for course; £180+vat, Discount for BMR members

Call Jill at BMR to book your place or for further information on 01896 758091

Further courses: There will be a further course on Budgeting; dates will be announced at the Financial Recording course.

New Sponsorship

Sheila Robertson
Sheila Robertson

Sheila Robertson of Gall Robertson was delighted to present sponsored coats to the Gala town Band on Saturday 29th September.

This means they now have them in advance of the concerts for Remembrance Sunday and the Angel’s Wings.

Supporting Young Entrepreneurs running Rural Businesses

We are delighted to be holding two more Rural Workshops for Young Entrepreneurs in November 2018.

There will be two informative and topical workshops for those involved in farming and farm diversification activities.

For clients of Gall Robertson there is no fee for attending. For non-clients the two workshops will cost £30 in total for both workshops.

If you are interested in attending please email info@gallrobertsonca.co.uk and reserve your place.

General Date Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Gall Robertson do not give advice on the topic of GDPR however we suggest anyone with questions about how it works goes to https://ico.org.uk/ where there are specific 'GDPR' and 'Getting ready for GDPR' sections that should help determine what you will need to do.

Make use of the marriage allowance

The marriage allowance could reduce the total tax a married couple pays by up to £220 each tax year. In the 2017-18 tax year, the allowance lets a non-taxpayer, that is, a person whose income Read more...

Use your Isa allowance

The 2017-18 tax year Isa allowance is £20,000 with returns made within an Isa being tax-efficient, and free of UK income tax and capital gains tax. Read more...

Charity Gift Aid

There are tax incentives for higher and additional rate taxpayers to make charitable donations through Gift Aid. Gift Aid is a government scheme that allows charities and certain community sports clubs to claim an additional 25% of any donation you make. Read more...

Gifts for occasions - Wedding, Christmas or Birthdays

Each tax year, you can also give away:



The annual exemption enables a person to give away up to £3,000 per annum free of IHT. In addition, any unused exemptions from the previous year, may be carried forward, Read more...

After the success of our Supporting Young Entrepreneurs running Rural Businesses workshops held in February, we are running another set of workshops in November.

Running from 7th November every Tuesday in November at the Borders Machinery Ring Offices in Earlston we will have a number of different speakers to update and inform you of topical issues to consider and help you with your rural business.

If you are interested in attending please email info@gallrobertsonca.co.uk or call 01896-751050.

Making Tax Digital delayed to 2020 at the earliest for taxes other than VAT

The government has amended the timetable and implementation intakes of Making Tax Digital (MTD).

Under the reformed timetable, only businesses with a turnover above the VAT threshold (£85,000) will have to keep digital records, and only for VAT purposes, starting from 2019. Businesses will not be asked to make the switch to MTD and update HMRC quarterly for other taxes until at least 2020.

While still wholly supporting the MTD initiative as a necessary move to modernise and streamline the tax system, the Treasury accepted the need to slacken the timetable and mandation around MTD in order to ensure businesses are able to comfortably transition. This means that 3 million of the smallest businesses and landlords will have the option to voluntarily make the switch to digital record keeping at their own pace before it becomes mandatory in no sooner than two years.

In this initial phase of MTD, businesses will not need to provide HMRC with information more regularly than usual, as VAT already requires quarterly returns.

The government came to this decision which has been welcomed by ICAS in Scotland having listened to concerns raised by ICAS, other professional bodies and parliamentary committees about the pace of change and the mandatory approach.

Under the new timetable:

HMRC will continue with their Making Tax Digital pilot and will start to pilot MTD for VAT by the end of this year, initially on a small, private scale and then widening the scope into a public pilot starting Spring 2018.

The government also addressed the hotly anticipated Summer Finance Bill, confirming it will be introduced following the summer recess, which concludes on 5 September. The bill will legislate all policies outlined in the pre-election Finance Bill, and all policies originally due to come into force in April 2017 will be effective from that date.

Making Tax Digital will be available on a voluntary basis for the smallest businesses, and for other taxes. Therefore, if the software works and genuinely delivers the promised benefits for businesses it will be possible for smaller businesses to choose to use it.

Another advantage of the new timetable is that it should allow time for agent services and software to 'catch up'. To date software for agents and agent access to client information has lagged behind, raising the possibility that if MTD had gone ahead as previously planned, businesses which wanted to use agents would have had difficulty complying.

ICAS continues to support the overall objectives of MTD for businesses; the new timetable should help to ensure that they are deliverable. However, there remain concerns about Making Tax Digital for VAT, for which the implementation date remains April 2019.

VAT concerns remain

Whilst most VAT returns are already submitted online, currently only 12% of returns are submitted direct from software. Many large companies cannot submit returns direct from software because of the complex nature of their VAT calculations, particularly for partial exemption. They therefore use spreadsheets.

It is understood that HMRC believe that it will be possible to integrate digital record keeping so that VAT quarterly updates can be generated and sent direct from the software the business (or agent) uses to keep their records. However, this will be difficult to achieve by April 2019.

It's not far away!

The deadline for 2016/17 benefit in kind P11d forms is fast approaching, along with the ( P11d(b) (Class 1A NIC contributions payable on benefits in kind). They need to be submitted to HMRC by 6th July 2017 where expenses or benefits were provided to any company director or employee in the tax year 2016/17 (covering the period from 6th April 2016 to 5th April 2017) which were not covered by an exemption or otherwise exempt from tax.

There is a penalty of £100 per 50 employees for each month or part month a P11d(b) is late.

If your adviser hasn't kept you informed about your submission then please come and talk to us at Gall Robertson.

We have recently welcomed two new starts at Gall Robertson.

We are delighted to welcome new team member Max Hastings to Gall Robertson as Accounts & Tax Trainee. Max is from Galashiels and has recently completed a degree in Business Management at Heriot Watt University achieving First Class Honours.

We have also been joined by Pamela Baillie at Gall Robertson. Pamela has just started working at the firm and is a CA who lives in St Boswells. Following positions in practice in Edinburgh, industry and at Royal Bank of Scotland she is delighted to be able to be based locally (and avoid the commute to Edinburgh!).

Sheila Robertson, Director said "This is great news for the firm and we are thrilled to have both Max and Pamela with us. It gives us a further opportunity to focus on client care and develop relationships with clients."

Here is some great coverage from CA Magazine about Karen Currie's promotion.

CA career news

Director Promotion at Gall Robertson Chartered Accountants & Business Advisers

Sheila Robertson and Karen Currie
Sheila Robertson and Karen Currie

Sheila Robertson, Director of Gall Robertson, Chartered Accountants and Business Advisers based in Tweedbank is delighted to announce that Karen Currie has been promoted to the position of Director at the Practice. Karen has worked in the firm since 2012 and works with a wide portfolio of clients.

Karen qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2001 and previously owned her own Practice before joining Gall Robertson. She manages clients including small and medium sized enterprises (SME's) and helps businesses ranging from Start-ups to well established businesses. Construction, hospitality and charities are Karen's particular specialities.

Gall Robertson was founded in 2001 and has gained an outstanding reputation with access to a quality and practical service designed to make running your business and your personal affairs simple and efficient.

Sheila Robertson said "This is fantastic news for the Practice and all the team are delighted. Karen has been a committed team member and has developed the client base whilst ensuring existing clients are well advised and supported. As a team we enjoy working with our local clients and providing proactive business support.

We now have a team of 15 people and Karen's promotion is another positive step forward for the firm. We have also been approved as a Training Office again for 2 CA students which is great news for the firm and enables staff to work in the firm whilst studying for their professional qualifications."

Training Office

We are delighted to be formally approved as a Training Office for 2 Chartered Accountant(CA) students at Gall Robertson. This is fantastic news as we like to nurture staff members throughout their career. Undertaking the CA exams whilst working at Gall Robertson allows staff to understand fully what is involved in working in practice whilst working towards what we obviously think is a great qualification to achieve.

The CA qualification is exceptional. It's a prestigious and internationally respected qualification that provides people with the knowledge, skills and values to be a highly regarded and sought-after business professional.

The CA qualification is comprised of professional study and relevant practical experience.

Successful women in business event - "Turning your passion into a business"

Ruth Hinks - Cocoa Black Ltd
Lauren Jamieson - The Colourful Edit

On the 10th November 2016 we held out first women in business event. Over 70 women from all over the Scottish Borders came together at the Ochiltrees Restaurant at Abbotsford House, Melrose for an evening of networking, inspiration and motivation.

We heard presentations from two of the Borders leading businesswomen who have turned their passion into a business. Ruth Hinks - UK World Chocolate Master and founder of Cocoa Black Limited and Lauren Kate Jamieson founder of The Colourful Edit, accessories, branding and styling.

We also gave a short presentation on Xero "Beautiful Accounting Software" the cloud based system which is revolutionising how business owners run their business.

"Very interesting evening, and enjoyed meeting
different people in totally different businesses and lifestyles
- Alexa

"Lauren and Ruth's presentations certainly
gave attendees things to think about in their own businesses"
- Jenny

"It was an excellent event.
Well done to Sheila and her team"
- Primrose

"I found it very informative; your speakers were interesting and inspiring.  It was a lovely evening and so well attended; a great success"
- Tina