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Thursday, 20 June 2013

Happy 4th Anniversary, Bettertax!

A little early but why not!

Bettertax has been trading for 4 years on 1st July and has gone gone from strength to strength.

The company started with 2 people (and a helper!). There is now 15 of us, all working together to bring you the Bettertax tax refund experience!

Over the time, our branding has evolved to. Here's our first logo and our first dudes.

tradesman's tax refund specialists logo

Working with the old adage, "never work with children or animals", it was a sad day when the pig got the chop! We also dropped the .org as our brand was becoming more recognisable.

The Bettertax dudes got a small make over too... can you spot what it is? This is March 2011.

During that year the logo and dudes got quite a new modern look, pulling the Bettertax corporate ID much more together.

2013 saw another change to the logo and dudes, which can be seen at the top of this page. Although fairly minor it also incorporated other elements to make our brand even more familiar and, we hope, friendly and approachable.

We've seen how our clients love stickers, so that's where the inspiration came from!

Have you joined our social media communities where we post and update regularly?

As we move through our 4th year we have many more exciting things planned to keep us as the number 1 tradesman's tax refund specialist!

Happy Birthday to us!

Bettertax - Tradesman's Tax Refund Specialists 01280 821020
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Sunday, 16 June 2013

HMRC Phishing Scams - Beware!

I just got really excited when I saw an email in my inbox from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) announcing "Auotmated Tax Refund Notification". Great!! It's MY turn to get some tax money back!

Here's what the email said:

Unclaimed Tax Refund Notification

You are Receiving this Notification Because you are yet to claim your tax refund which has accrued up to 279.41 GBP,
 This is the last and Final notice we will be sending regarding this issue. you are advised to respond Swiftly to this mail
 so as to facilitate the process within 72hours of receiving the information Submitted.

On files dated 04/01/2013, The following Banks are processed within 48hrs of receiving your information due to the system link up.

Co-operative Bank Plc

 Lloyds TSB Bank Plc

Nationwide Building Society

NatWest Bank

Santander Bank

other banks are required to allow up 72hrs.

 You are require to Submit the tax refund request using the reference below

Refund Now
Please Note : If the Account provide is incorrect or inactive your refund would be forfeited and also

For Security reason we will record ( IP Address, Time and Date ) Deliberate wrong input will be criminally pursued

Yours Sincerely
  HM Revenue & Customs

Now, apart from the fact that I know for sure I am not owed any tax back, there are a number of clues here that anyone receiving this type of email should be very wary about.

The first very important point to bear in mind when receiving an email like this is - HMRC will NEVER voluntarily contact you giving you these glad tidings! It's hard enough getting tax refunds out of them the normal way!

Now, check out the really bad grammar - HMRC may be extremely annoying to deal with but by and large, they can write a good letter when they have to.

The email address it's sent from is NOT a proper one - why would HMRC use anything other than their own?

Just be very aware that these phishing scams come around a few times a year. If you are ever in any doubt, just give us a call or ask via any of our social media sites. Don't get caught out!!

Bettertax - Tradesman's Tax Refund Specialists 01280 821020
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Thursday, 6 June 2013

Uniform Tax Rebates

Following on from Paul Lewis' Breakfast TV slot this morning, and a subsequent Facebook comment by Martin Lewis (no, they are not related! The Lewis' that is!), I thought I'd talk a little about tax relief on uniforms and workwear.

As a tradesman's tax refund company, claiming the tax back on workwear and uniforms is just a part of what we do.

HMRC have certain criteria when it comes to tax claims on uniforms. Money Saving Expert sets it out:

To be able to claim tax relief, ALL of the following must apply:

  • You wear a recognisable uniform that shows you've got a certain job, like a branded T-shirt or police uniform. Also, we've heard reports that even plain clothes, without a logo, that you only wear for work may count - it's worth a try.
  • Your employer requires you to wear it while you're working.
  • You have to pay to clean, repair or replace it yourself. However, you can't claim if your employer washes your kit, provides facilities to do so (even if you don't use them) or pays you for doing this maintenance.
  •  You paid income tax in the year you are claiming for.
These uniform claims can be claimed for up to 4 years. If it is just a claim being made for uniform "maintenance", the tax code will probably be adjusted to take what you could get back, into account. However, if your tax code is changed, it is important to make sure that if you change jobs or circumstances, you apply to get the tax code changed accordingly.

As always, do call us if you need any help and advice.

Bettertax - Tradesman's Tax Refund Specialists 01280 821020
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