Top Tips On Spoof HMRC Communications

Payroll experts birminghamFirstly, HMRC will never notify you of a tax rebate by email or text. Secondly, HMRC will never ask you to disclose personal or payment information by email or text.

So, if you get a request for either of these things purportedly from HMRC via text or email you know it is a spoof, con and potentially a danger to your PC and possibly your computer entire network.

HMRC are constantly aware of scammers using sophisticated methods to make their false-communications look like official HMRC communications. If you receive one of these texts or emails and have the slightest inkling that it is a fake, the advice from HMRC is:

  • Do not open any attachments, as they may well contain a virus
  • Do not click on links, they are so sophisticated that they could take you to a website that looks exactly like the HMRC website
  • Never disclose personal or confidential information
  • Forward suspicious HMRC texts to 60599 (charged at your network rate)
  • Forward suspicious HMRC emails to the HMRC phising team at phishing@hmrc-gsi.gov.uk

If You’ve Already Disclosed Information To Scammers

If you think you have disclosed confidential information to a scam email or text act immediately.

Contact the HMRC security at security.custcon@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk.  Provide a brief description of what you have disclosed for example your name or password, but DO NOT give the actual personal details in the email.

If you have any questions or concerns specifically to do with payroll processing and payroll procedures please talk to one of our head office payroll experts who will be more than happy to talk to you.

Are Injuries To Feelings Payments Taxable?

Payroll Service BirminghamAfter Mr Moorthy agreed a settlement package with his employer of £200,000 as you can imagine, HMRC wanted to tax him on this. It was agreed that £30,000 of Mr Moorthy’s settlement was ascribed as injury to feelings for age discrimination.

Under Section 406 of the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003 HMRC said that injury to feelings was outside the Act which says there is no tax payable “on account of injury… to an employee”. HMRC argued that the word ‘injury’ related to compensation for personal injury, not injury to feelings.

The Court of Appeal resolved definitively that injury to feelings awards do fall within the exemption that tax is not payable on compensation payments for injury to feelings. However, the Court of Appeal also said that this issue of injury to feelings is likely to occur again as with effect from the 2018/2019 tax year the tax statutes has changed to add that “Although ‘injury’ includes psychiatric injury, it does not include injured feelings.”

If you want to find out more on the case of Moorthy vs HMRC  

What this case highlights is that tax rules are always changing and because we are payroll experts and outsourced payroll is our business we are on top of all of these changes. We take away the headache of payroll processing for a wide range of corporate, education and individual employers throughout the UK.  Give us a call and let’s see how we can save you time and money. Please get in touch with one of our expert team based at our Birmingham office.

TGI Fridays Face Strike Ballots

Outsourced Payroll BirminghamAfter coming third in the list of firms named and shamed by the Government for failing to pay the legal minimum wage, TGI Friday is embroiled in a dispute with its waiting staff at two of its 86 branches who have been balloted on whether to take strike action.

The American restaurant chain is facing strike ballots at its Covent Garden and Milton Keynes branches over breaches of the company’s tips policy. It is reported that Unite the union is supporting the workers over concerns that their employer has refused to address their concerns on tips and other issues.

As well as being shamed at being near the top of the list of employers failing to pay the minimum wage, TGI Fridays was also found to be using unpaid trial shifts of up to 6 hours, and is also coming under pressure from Unite over their decision to take 40% of waiting staff’s card tips because they failed to have a proper consultation.

If you have workers who receive tips and you’re not sure how to handle this from a payroll point of view, please talk to the payroll experts at our Birmingham head office, we will be delighted to help you with this any other issue relating to processing wages and salaries. Please contact us. 

What Your Payroll Team Needs To Know About GDPR

Payroll Services BirminghamAfter months of speculation on how GDPR will affect UK businesses the wait is over and the new law came into force on 25th May 2018.  Quite how the UK Information Commissioner will interpret GDPR in the “real world” is yet to be revealed, but some unequivocal facts are certain and this is what you need to know.

You need to take GDPR seriously, no matter how large or small an employer you are. Fines for non-compliance are Euro 20m or 4% of turnover.  Which for some companies and organisations could amount to staggering sums.

You need to treat the data you hold on your employees with respect and care. It needs to be safely stored and you have new obligations such as, when personal data has been lost or compromised, the data breach must be reported to the Information Commissioner within 72 hours and all employees impacted must be notified.  If this does happen, then it is likely that the payroll department will need to do the notifying as they usually are the department that holds and uses personal data regularly.

GDPR requires that your employees know what data you hold on them, and what you use it for. It requires an informed decision on the employees’ part for data to be held, processed and analysed by the payroll department. Employees can withdraw their consent for certain data to be used, although in order to carry out your duties for HMRC, for example, your legal obligation could be the basis upon which you hold and process the data.

However, you also need to know that your employees now have enhanced rights to access the data you hold on them and ask for it to be corrected or deleted. If you do not have a centralised system, and instead are working on spreadsheets and various paper documents to get this information together could be time consuming and under GDPR you have 40 days to respond to such requests.

The Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals is running courses on GDPR, or please contact our payroll professionals at Payroll Masters’ Birmingham Head Quarters.

Are You Confident Your Minimum Wage Processes Are Correct?

Payroll Service BirminghamWhen it comes to processing payroll the demands on employers are constantly becoming more and more onerous because regulations are constantly changing.  There seems to be a new announcement every week! This means that employers have to be one step ahead so their systems and processes are in place, ready for when new aspects of payroll compliance come into force.

For example, did you know that in April next year (2019) employers will need to include the number of hours worked by an employee on their payslip? However, this is only for hours they are being paid and only in situations where the employee’s pay varies as a result of the time worked.

There is also a consultation going on right-now on how to increase transparency in the UK labour market which is in response to the Taylor review. The review recommended that all workers should get a payslip, and the consultation is looking at how this can be implemented.

It seems that every piece of legislation has nuances and circumstances in which something either applies or doesn’t dependent upon the exact situation. This is truly a difficult path for non-payroll experts to follow.

Payroll Masters clients have real peace of mind that their payroll function is completely conforming to the latest requirements of employment law. We are based in Birmingham but our services are undertaken for all kinds of employers across the UK.  From individual disabled persons employing carers through direct payments , to organisations processing large payrolls.  Please contact us  for a no obligation chat about your needs.