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What the Spring Budget could mean to you

What the Spring Budget could mean to you

 

**** This article has been amended on the 15th of March ****

 

How will the Spring Budget affect you?

On 8th March 2017, Chancellor Philip Hammond presented his first – and allegedly last – Spring Budget, outlining the UK’s plans for spending and borrowing as well as proposed changes to taxation. As always, the Budget was met with mixed reactions, though it would be fair to say that it was moderately upbeat considering recent events and the uncertainty surrounding Brexit.

Among other things, the Chancellor allocated extra money to health and social care services, free schools and addressed housing, transport and domestic violence issues, so the Budget did have many redeeming features. The fact that the UK was the second-fastest growing economy in the G7 in 2016 and the growth forecast for 2017 has been raised from 1.4 per cent to 2 per cent is also extremely good news. What many dentists will want to know, however, is how will the recent announcements affect them?

Firstly, the Government has imposed a new reform that will decrease the tax-free allowance on share dividends from £5,000 to £2,000; in other words, shareholders and company owners will benefit less from receiving a dividend. If you operate as an incorporated business you may well be affected by this, though it is likely the change will be relatively insignificant to your overall take-home.

Another key measure that was introduced to tackle tax avoidance and aggressive tax planning, is the plan to apply a 25 per cent transfer charge to qualifying recognised overseas pension schemes. Combined, these measures will make mitigating tax much harder moving forward. 

The good news is that personal tax-free allowance will increase this year to £11,500 from £11,000 as planned, and again to £12,500 by 2020. Disappointingly, business rates relief will remain the same, but after the amount of changes announced in 2016 we can’t be too shocked at the Chancellor’s decision. What he did say on the matter is that no business losing small business rate relief will see their bill increase by more than £50, though that will likely prove to be a small comfort for those hoping for bigger change.

Of course, there are other positives to have come out of the Spring Budget, including the fact that vehicle exercise duty rates and the HGV Road User Levy has been frozen for another year. With fears rising about potential increases in dental materials due to Brexit, no change in this area is the best that can be hoped for, because once their prices rise, so will yours!

Regulation concerning alcohol, tobacco and sugar should also be celebrated, as this could help to improve patients’ oral health. Tobacco, for instance, will rise by 2 per cent above Retail Price Index (RPI) inflation, which will cost patients an extra 35p for a packet of 20 cigarettes. As for beer, cider, wine and spirits, costs will increase in line with RPI inflation, which will result in a rise of 2p on a pint of beer, 1p on a pint of cider, 36p on a bottle of whiskey and 32p on a bottle of gin.

Perhaps one of the most victorious announcements of all is that the much anticipated sugar tax will go ahead as planned at a rate of 18p per litre where there is more than five grams of sugar per 100ml, and 24p per litre where there is more than eight grams or more of sugar per 100ml. Should this move prove successful, the profession will hopefully begin to see improvements in children’s oral health.

One of the bigger talking points to have come from the Spring Budget is the Government’s U-turn on plans to increase Class 4 National Insurance Contributions for self-employed people. Originally meant to increase from 9 per cent to 10 per cent in April 2018 and again to 11 per cent in 2019, it has since been dropped after the Chancellor faced backlash by Conservative backbenchers. The proposal to scrap Class 2 National Insurance in April 2018 is still set to go ahead.

For all of the drama that occurred afterwards, though, it wasn't a particularly groundbreaking Budget, nor will it have a huge impact on dentists. There will be fewer opportunities to mitigate tax moving forward, but with National Insurance Class 4 rates now set to remain the same, it is not as bad as it could have been. If you are thinking of maximising the legitimate tax reliefs available or simply want to find out more about how the Budget could affect you, get in touch with your Independent Financial Adviser.

For more information please call 0845 345 5060, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.money4dentists.com

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NOV
11

Insure Your Home For Peace of Mind - 4 dentist group

Insure Your Home For Peace of Mind - 4 dentist group

Today, the assurance that home insurance can provide is invaluable, particularly as it can offer peace of mind to homeowners that their house and contents are protected.

There are a number of different types of home insurance available from standard cover to more bespoke, specialist policies. Buildings insurance covers both the structure of the house as well as the replacement or repairs of permanent fixtures such as bathrooms and kitchens as well as the roof. Contents insurance protects your declared belongings, including electronics, jewellery, clothes, furniture and so on from incidences like theft, fire and flooding. Accidental damage cover, which can be used to repair or replace items that have been damaged – such as a smashed TV or wine stain on the carpet – is classed as an extra, so be sure to specify what you require when selecting your policy. More specialist policies can cover holiday homes, listed buildings, high-value homes and belongings and non-standard houses.

Regardless of which policy you choose it is crucial that you are aware of what it covers and the restrictions that are applied within the small print, otherwise you could find yourself unable to make a claim. 

Statistics show that the most common claims made by policyholders in 2015 were weather (25 per cent), escaping water (21 per cent), fire (13 per cent), theft (13 per cent), accidental damage (10 per cent), domestic subsidence (4 per cent) and other domestic claims (14 per cent). [i]

Claims for floods have increased in particular over recent years. At the end of 2015, start of 2016 alone, storms Desmond, Eva and Frank are thought to have resulted in payouts of £1.3 billion, with each claim thought to average at £50,000 – in 2013/14 the average was £31,000.[ii] With research showing that heavy rainstorms are on the rise due to manmade climate change – one in five extreme rain events experienced globally are as a result of the global rise in temperature[iii] – it is possible that we could be seeing a lot more claims for bad weather and flooding in the coming years; something to think about if you are not currently protected against these events.

If you don't have an existing policy or you are looking to change or upgrade, it can be prudent to enlist the services of a specialist agency such as insurance4dentists that can advise you on products that would be best suited to you. By going at it alone you run the risk of selecting cover that might not be sufficient or correct for your needs, which could result in a subsequent claim being rejected. Thus, for peace of mind, contact an expert adviser today.

 

For more information please call 0845 345 5060 or 0754 DENTIST. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.insurance4dentists.co.uk

 



[i] UK Insurance and Long Term Savings Key Facts 2015. Accessed online August 2016 at https://www.abi.org.uk/~/media/Files/Documents/Publications/Public/2015/Statistics/Key%20Facts%202015.pdf

[ii] Association of British Insurers. New figures reveal scale of insurance response after recent floods. Published January 2016. Accessed online August 2016 at https://www.abi.org.uk/News/News-releases/2016/01/New-figures-reveal-scale-of-insurance-response-after-recent-floods

[iii] Fischer EM, Knutti R. Anthropogenic contribution to global occurrence of heavy-precipitation and high-temperature extremes. Published online 27 April 2015. Accessed online August 2016 at http://www.nature.com/articles/nclimate2617.epdf?referrer_access_token=15X7XExUOy_QyvQu3oFbBNRgN0jAjWel9jnR3ZoTv0MiqNJsr0khJzfLkhisC13QLeclYOunBpKyWwMws3LCxAbMW6ZeZtRWGeJqzjaIlG0THL84TJflFRuci-_5AC2TC5OFqIL6C2FchKpN7X0tcse9TXYTD9JL2PQtQ8SIueuA9AwYf2wX2ATSugIprTD5G-nRwQKdPabgc2BOsEeP20S5cQQyB8z5jdT7GDJfM5fWZ-W0GRCNq7rv-s7xjtOBnJNX4r8ng6irk0B2Xy509ckVGq1gCD7cdZTMrfC7WWXcj8BJVH17sivoLY85lFdY&tracking_referrer=www.theguardian.com

 

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