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We've scoured the web to get you the most up-to-date advice which includes the most useful tools on offer from the officials themselves.

Effective tax planning is essential if you are to minimise your tax bills. Simple tax planning can significantly reduce your tax liabilities.

The self-assessment tax return is an unavoidable burden if you are liable for self-employed tax or have complicated income tax affairs.

Corporation tax is charged on a company's profits. If you trade as a limited company, ensure that paying this tax is as painless as possible.

National Insurance Contributions (NICs) are payable whether you are self-employed or employed by your own company, although different rates apply.

As well as your legal obligations, you’ll want to ensure that payroll is painless and that you use any opportunities to improve your tax-efficiency.

VAT

Effective VAT planning aims to ensure that VAT is relatively painless, and that you are reclaiming as much as possible of the VAT you pay.

Capital gains are made when you sell something for more money than you paid for it. As a result, you can be subject to tax. Take professional advice.

Business property taxes apply to businesses with commercial premises.There are two commercial property taxes: business rates and stamp duty land tax.

If you have tax problems or face a tax investigation, it pays to seek professional advice and you must act rather than just hoping for the best.

One in three self-employed workers not insured

18 June 2019

Almost one third of the UK's self-employed workers have no protection against the risks associated with running a business, according to a new report.

A survey of 400 self-employed people, carried out by Qdos in partnership with Research in Insurance, has found that 29% of UK self-employed workers polled do not have any insurance at all. It means they are taking "unnecessary financial risk" according to Qdos.

This group of workers (83% of whom are sole-traders) said they do not hold insurance for the following reasons:

  • 53% do not think they need it;
  • 25% said it's too expensive;
  • 17% have never considered it at all;
  • 8% are looking to buy insurance;
  • 1% can't find the right policy;
  • 1% say they are self-insured;
  • 5% gave other reasons.

Of the 71% of individuals who hold at least one form of insurance, the most common policy is public liability insurance (64%). Higher earners (£50k+ annual turnover) are more likely to have insurance in place (95%), while those earning under £50k a year are less likely (63%).

"Self-employed workers are exposed to all kinds of risks on a daily basis - many of which they have no control over and cannot see coming," said Seb Maley, ceo of Qdos, a self-employment insurance provider.

"When running a small business, there's no escaping the fact that you might have an accident and not be able to work, make a mistake for which you're liable or even be investigated by the taxman.

"Sole traders do not have the luxury of being protected by their limited company either. This means that if an incident does happen, they will be personally liable should they not hold insurance. Given [that] challenging HMRC, for example, can cost individuals thousands of pounds, the old adage it's better to be safe than sorry has never been truer."

Written by Rachel Miller.

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