Frequently asked questions
There are a variety of legal structures available for your business, ranging from sole trader to partnership, limited company or PLC. The question as to what is right for you will depend on a number of factors, including the type of business, tax planning issues, and how the owners of and workers in the business are to be remunerated.
You will need to register for VAT if you expect your turnover to exceed £70,000 during the next month or once your turnover exceeds £70,000 in a 12-month period. You may also want to register for VAT even though your sales do not exceed the threshold. For example, if a significant part of your sales are "zero-rated" or "reduced rate" for VAT purposes, then if you register for VAT you may be able to claim a refund of some or all of the VAT you pay on inputs.
If your business has employees, it is required to have employer liability insurance. In addition, many businesses also carry public liability insurance -- since most businesses, one way or another, interact with the public. Depending on the nature of your business, you may need motor insurance, product liability insurance and/or special types of risk cover such as professional indemnity insurance or performance bonds.
Employers must use the PAYE ('pay as you earn') system to deduct taxes from their employees' earnings and remit them to HMRC. Nearly all businesses are required to make such deductions. You are also required to pay a separate employer's National Insurance contribution. The amounts that you are required to deduct depend on each individual employee's tax coding. Many businesses choose to out-source their payroll accounting, but some do their own. For people who run small businesses and want to handle their own payroll, HMRC offers free assistance.
Yes, all businesses need to prioritise health and safety. If your business is labour-intensive, and especially if it involves physical labour and/or transportation services, it will likely present a range of health and safety issues and may be subject to inspections to ensure regulatory compliance. You will need to determine how you will ensure compliance, and how much it will cost the business to do so.
Although most people try to avoid lawsuits and prefer not to breach contracts, there are times when people find it necessary to take a contract dispute to court. This article provides a basic overview of the law relating to breaches of contract and the remedies for breach of contract.
- Residency Orders & Child Benefit / Child Tax Credits
- Redundancy Qualifying Period
- Intellectual rights/ assignment agreement
- Redundancy and contractual notice period being questioned...
- Redundancy right on temporary post renewed for 3 years in addition to a perm contract
- Can I get a vote by Email or letter post?
- Defamation of character - cease & desist
- Pass Off?
- GP Breaches Patient Confidentiality
- Am I being sued? Do I have to pay?
- My son used my debit card.
- Family Dispute
- Problem with sale of house !
- Broken Contract ??
- Endowment assignment
Widow wins legal fight to have baby of deceased husband
A widow yesterday won a lengthy court battle to ensure that the sperm of her deceased husband will remain frozen to allow her time to decide if she wishes to conceive his child, reports the BBC. Beth Warren's husband, Warren...
Do-it-yourself surrogacy agreements criticised by judges
A judge has warned against illegal informal surrogacy agreements between friends, after hearing a case in which such an agreement has ended in disaster. The High Court heard how a woman had come to an agreement with a friend to...
Civil partnership to same-sex marriage conversion edges closer
The conversion of civil partnerships to same-sex marriages took a significant step forward last week, marking a huge boost to same-sex couples. The news came following a speech by Helen Grant, the Equalities Minister, to a House of Commons committee,...
Leading politician signals 'all-women shortlists' could be phased in
Coalition Business Secretary Vince Cable has suggested that the Government consider recommendations that would see a new law permitting all-women shortlists for top jobs introduced to address boardroom inequality. Mr Cable said that women-only shortlists are being considered as a...
Devolution: Silk Commission recommends more power for Wales
The Silk Commission has ruled that the Welsh Assembly should be given more powers over youth justice and policing as part of the ongoing devolutionary process, reports the BBC. The Commission, chaired by Paul Silk, a former clerk to the...
Online currency: UK law firm signals major legal action against MtGox owner
A UK law firm has announced that it has 'hundreds' of clients looking to join a law suit against MtGox, a Japanese online currency exchange, which defaulted after losing more than $500m of the online currency BitCoin. BitCoin values have...
Millionaire in legal battle over car number plate
The AutoTrader tycoon Sir John Madejski has launched a legal battle to retrieve a personal number plate accidentally sold in 2010 with a previous car, reports GetReading. The former owner of Reading Football Club, Sir John Madejski, made his fortune...
MPs call for legalisation of prostitution
A group of MPs and peers have called for the Government to soften the laws on prostitution to decriminalise the victims of the sex trade, whilst toughening punishments for pimps, reports The Independent. The recommendations are the result of a...
Researchers from Glasgow see stopped benefit claims on the rise
Researchers from Glasgow University have revealed that the number of people in Wales who have had their benefits stopped has almost tripled in the past ten years, something they claim may be due to poor assessment of entitlement, reports the...
World's second biggest tobacco company threatens legal action over packaging
British American Tobacco (BAT), the world's second largest producer of cigarettes, has announced it would consider a legal challenge to any proposal by the UK Government to insist that cigarettes are marketed in plain packaging. The UK Government is considering...
Law Commission recommends new law on pre-nuptial agreements
The Law Commission's eagerly awaited report on Matrimonial Property, Needs and Agreements has been published and, as expected, advises the Government to legalise pre-nuptial agreements, reports the BBC. The Matrimonial Property, Needs and Agreements Report was produced by the Law...
Medical negligence: Parents of premature baby will take legal action
The parents of a baby born extremely prematurely in Singleton Hospital in Swansea have announced that they intend to sue the hospital trust where he died, reports the BBC. Rohan Rhodes was born 14 weeks early at Singleton Hospital in...
UK Government announces summit to tackle problem drugs
The UK Government has announced a summit of drug experts, police and others to discuss the issue of legal highs, amid concerns about the safety of the substances and problems with legislation, reports the BBC. Legal highs have been in...
Defamation: 'Wolf of Wall Street' character sues producers for $25m
A former stockbroker depicted in the Martin Scorsese movie 'Wolf of Wall Street' has announced he is to sue the film's producers Paramount Pictures and Red Granite Productions, over the way he has been portrayed in the film, reports the...
Government advisors want auction for UK visas
Government advisors believe that UK visas should be auctioned off to the highest bidders, in order to ensure that UK taxpayers benefit from allowing wealthy migrants into the UK, reports the BBC. The Home Secretary Theresa May is being asked...