If you believe your property is in the wrong band, you can challenge it through the Valuation Office Agency to get your property revalued and moved into a different, cheaper band.

There are some criteria you have to meet, so you’ll need to have some concrete evidence for your challenge to be successful. For example, if there have been changes to your property that would make it less valuable than the original valuation – part has been demolished, or it is a house that has subsequently been converted into flats. Or there may have been a change to the property or local area that would have changed the valuation of the property, such as roadworks that have been built that would have affected the rateable value of the property. You can also get your band changed if mistakes have been made when the rating was carried out. If your council tax band has been incorrectly calculated, not only will you enjoy lower bills, but you’ll get the money back that you had overpaid, all the way back to when you started paying the wrong amount. If you’ve been in your property for a couple of decades, this could be a big chunk. But beware – challenging your council tax band can deliver bad news as well as good – you could end up increasing your council tax bill by the agency deciding that you should be in a higher band. This could even affect your neighbours, with the potential to make you quite unpopular down your street.

HMRC Family Investment Unit closes

A special HMRC team set up to review the use of family investment companies was a complete waste of time and diverted resources from the investigation of aggressive tax avoidance and evasion, say leading tax and advisory experts. The view from commentators is that HMRC have now shut down this unit after it distracted valuable technical resource for more than two years from an area which didn’t merit such attention in the first place. HMRC set up the unit because they were concerned by the increasing use of FICs for tax avoidance purposes, and a specialist, and apparently secret, unit was set up in April 2019 to review their purpose and operation. There was a concern that HMRC would force a legislative change to the tax rules for investment companies, which could have had a broad impact and damaged the UK corporate regime for international investment. Companies have become popular vehicles for holding investments, such as property, shares and bonds.  The lower rate of corporation tax, currently 19%, and the ability to transfer shares in the company between family members provided a flexible environment, when compared to a traditional family trust. It would seem HMRC have reached the conclusion that any perceived tax avoidance was questionable in the first place. The company pays corporation tax on its profits, and in fact, the corporate tax rate is increasing by 6% to 25% from 1 April 2023.  The timing of the conclusion of HMRC’s review may be predicated by the corporate tax increase in 18 months. The good news is that the investment company rules remain as they are, which is important for the UK’s corporate competitiveness in the international market, especially in the context of Brexit. The review is closed, and companies will now be looked at by HMRC as ‘business as usual’.

Financial Advice Including Pension Advice, Bristol

If you would like to speak with one of our Independent Financial Advisors and potentially receive financial advice, please contact us on 0117 923 7652. We are based in CliftonBristol but we are happy to service clients from across the UK and we provide free initial meetings at our client’s convenience.

Churchill Wealth Management Limited is located at 13 Alma Vale Rd, Bristol BS8 2HL, United Kingdom.

About Us: Churchill Wealth Management is a team of #independent financial advisors#/#financial planners# (IFAs) based in Clifton, Bristol (http://www.churchillwealthmanagement.co.uk/).We provide independent# financial advice#, including #pension advice#, #investment advice#, #inheritance tax planning#, protection/#insurance advice#.