Your business in 2018: deadlines for your diary!

Posted: Monday December 4 2017

By: Abbie Coleman

Alpaca have been enthusiastically writing blogs for over 6 months now and we have always submitted them on time. This month however, they slipped through the net which is why you are hearing from us a little later than usual. The excuse?

Your business in 2018: deadlines for your diary!

By Richard Turner – Alpaca

So, this blog is about not falling into that same trap with your business needs and deadlines.

Anybody running a business will know the feeling of getting bogged down in the ‘doing’ which distracts them from the wider picture of their business as a whole. This time of year and the end of the financial year are particularly busy times for businesses with key deadlines looming. Often things can end up being put off until the last minute and important deadlines can be missed.

Here’s our customary nod to the season –  why not make a New Years’ resolution to put key deadlines into your diary and generally plan ahead more ?

Here are a few we thought of, which are keeping Alpaca’s clients’ busy recently:

Recently the Criminal Finances Act 2017 introduced two new separate criminal offences for companies and partnerships: failure to prevent facilitation of UK tax evasion; and failure to prevent facilitation of overseas tax evasion. Both offences came into force on 30 September 2017 and they are strict liability offences (meaning no excuses). However, it is a defence for the entity to show either that it had in place reasonable “prevention procedures” designed to prevent tax evasion facilitation from occurring, or to show that it was not reasonable in the circumstances to have any prevention procedures in place.  Similar to the defences under the existing Bribery Act, you will need to factor this into your commercial agreements and employment contracts/consultancy agreements in order to protect you from the risk.


Another issue that is well and truly on Alpaca’s radar at the moment, and is hopefully on yours too, is the General Data Protection Regulation, which has a far-reaching global impact on data security. No matter where you are based, any organisation that does business with EU citizens must comply with the GDPR’s expanded data protection rules by 25 May 2018. That may sound like a long way away whilst we are still in 2017, but meeting its requirements will not necessarily be an easy task. We have GDPR expertise within our Alpaca herd and our September blog focussed on the same, so please do get in touch if you would like some more information about it.

How important a change is it ? Well, Honda was fined £13,000 for sending emails to check whether its customers still wanted to receive emails. Wetherspoons went one step further and deleted its entire customer database, largely because it was just too complicated to ensure compliance with the new regulations.  However big or small you are, you NEED to address the changes.

Termination Treatments

Another one for the diary is the reform of tax treatment of termination payments. In a nutshell, any payment made to an employee leaving your business that covers part of the existing contractual entitlement (including the notice period even if the employee does not work it) will be taxed and subject to employer NICs on any amount above the £30,000 threshold. This change will take place from 6 April 2018, so again, fairly soon into the new year.

Returning to our opening theme of being bogged down in the “doing”; well that’s a whole ‘nother topic and one to which we will return in 2018; the classic “working on – v – working in” your business.

In the meantime why not take a look back at our previous blogs to remind yourself of the issues we have talked about this year and which might help you with your business strategies for next year. As for some of the issues we have raised above, well we plan to pick up on some of them in more detail in our blogs over the next year………….

Happy New Year everyone!


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