Major changes to the Corporation Tax Forms

Date Published: April 8, 2015

Category: Corporation Tax Returns & iXBRL Format, HMRC News

When talking to our clients recently it has surprised me how few know about the major change that has already happened to the Corporation Tax forms issued by HMRC. At first I thought it was just the usual issue of people simply failing to spot the important email out of the many hundred that hit our struggling inboxes each day. But on further investigation that doesn’t appear to be the issue here.

Before I go on, let me tell you what the change actually is. For Accounting Periods commencing on or after April 1st 2015 (i.e. a few days ago), the good old and well-loved CT600 (2008) Version 2 form is no longer acceptable. You now have to use the nattily named CT600 (2015) Version 3 form. Not only that, but all of the supplementary pages have also been reissued. Sure, the sub-sections have the same codes but all of those forms have changed too.

So why is it that only a few Tax Agents actually know this has happened? I think it is simply that they haven’t been told. Software developers have known about this for a while and it was my assumption that Tax Agents would be informed by HMRC via similar channels but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Now that the forms have been officially published (April 7th 2015) I can pass on the good news!

The biggest change (apart from almost everything!) is that there is no longer a “Short” CT600, just one complete form to use in all cases. I think it is a typo that the HMRC web site states about the new 2015 form that “Companies with less straightforward tax affairs should use this form” because there really is only one form to use! If you recall, the old “Detailed” form is 8 pages long and the “Short” form is a 4 page subset of the “Detailed” – so I guess you will share my amusement when you discover that the newly designed form has somehow been stretched to cover 11 pages!

It’s a cleaner form and all of the boxes have been nicely renumbered in increments of 5 without any out of sequence boxes. Old and unused boxes have been removed and some new ones added, plus the flow is probably a bit more logical. I still can’t decide if this was a long overdue change or just a budget that needed to be spent, I guess time will tell when the new forms are used in anger in the coming months.

Anyway, if you want to get ahead of the game this is the page for you – here you will find all of the new forms and related guides. And don’t worry about having software to support your needs, we are just putting the finishing touches to our 2015 CT products which will automatically use the new forms and iXBRL taxonomy for periods commencing on or after April 1st 2015. To make things even better, we have extended the capabilities of our CT Solution Express product to include R&D (with Research and Development Expenditure Credit (RDEC)) and Charges (including Charitable Donations) which means CT Solution Express will cover even more of your clients’ CT requirements.

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