Thursday, September 24, 2009

HMRC's computers – an unfortunate conjunction of death and taxes?


Following a software update, HMRC's records show a number of their "customers" as being deceased.

To paraphrase Mark Twain, these reports of death are greatly exaggerated.

It is almost beyond a cliché to refer to the quote that death and taxes are the only two certainties in life but it would be worrying if HMRC were to assume responsibility for both. Unfortunately, HMRC are unlikely to accept that being officially recorded as dead removes the obligation to pay taxes and, in any case, there would then be inheritance tax to worry about.

Copied from Baker Tilly's weekly tax brief 23 Sept 2009

Monday, September 21, 2009

What else can a man's razor do?

Radio 4's That Mitchell and Webb Sound recently featured a sketch about a typically overblown razor ad for the Accelerator 12-Blade:

'The first blade shaves you close.

'The second blade shaves you closer still.

'The third blade sets up your internet banking.

'The fourth blade shaves you closer still.

'The fifth blade does your VAT receipts and puts them in an office file, not a shoebox.

'The sixth blade...'

My thanks to Daniel at Taxation magazine for bringing this to my attention.

Friday, September 18, 2009

How NOT to describe an accountant

A business coach was looking for an alliterative approach to use when targeting accountants. The following positive adjectives were all identified as possible aspirations but rejected at least partly for having the potential to be misunderstood in the context of accountants:
Absurd, Adequate, Adventurous, Agile, Amorous, Aphrodisiac, Approachable, Appropriate, Arousing, Arresting, Assisting, Astonishing, Astounding, Attentive, Attractive, Audacious, Auspicious, Authoritative, Autonomous, Available, Awe-inspiring.
Any more?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

More tax quotes

Haven't posted any quotes about taxation for a while so here are some more:

" I'm proud to be paying taxes in the United States. The only thing is—I could be just as proud for half the money."
- Arthur Godfrey


"Worried about an IRS audit? Avoid what's called a red flag. That's something the IRS always looks for. For example, say you have some money left in your bank account after paying taxes. That's a red flag."
- Jay Leno

"Day in and day out, your tax accountant can make or lose you more money than any single person in your life, with the possible exception of your kids."
- Harvey Mackay

"There's nothing wrong with the younger generation that becoming taxpayers won't cure."
- Dan Bennett

"People who complain about paying their income tax can be divided into two types: men and women."
- anonymous

"If you get up early, work late, and pay your taxes, you will get ahead -- if you strike oil."
- J. Paul Getty



Previous posts containing tax quotes can be found through this link

Monday, September 14, 2009

Why there is always a vacancy for a Finance Director

If the FD is really good, he will be headhunted - leaving a vacancy

If the FD is really bad, he will be fired - leaving a vacancy

If the company prospers the FD may well land the top job - leaving a vacancy

If the MD dies or retires only the FD has sufficient familiarity with all aspects of the business to take over - leaving a vacancy

If the company is doing badly, the FD will know first and will leave before anybody else finds out - leaving a vacancy

(According to Peter Vaines and Roger Nuttall in their book "The Bottom Line")

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Fun tweets about accountants

I've been posting the occasional list of fun tax tweets I've picked up on twitter. This time I'm sharing tweets about accountants that made me smile.

My accountant told me to put money into LAND.... so I dug a hole and put it in the garden...
@softwareus

We're taking a cab up to Cambridge, our cabbie is a former accountant (with his own Blackberry!). Man, the recession is worse than I thought
@jackfoster74

Mother is discussing invoicing with me (she's an accountant). Hope she doesn't plan on submitting one for my first 18 years.
@ComplexDiamond

My (just turned) 2yo just counted to ten! He might be an accountant like his uncle.
@MichaTaylor

If all the economists in the world were laid end to end they still wouldn't reach a conclusion. -accountant father in law
@jimupchurch

Sorry about this one... A tongue tried to hire an accountant. The accountant said no. There's no accounting for taste.
@StillDrew

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Queen's tax planning is quite basic

According to this Spitting Image sketch, the Queen's new accountants are the Marx Brothers, masquerading as: Bogus, Bogus & Fiddle.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Parkinson's law for accountants

The law of triviality:

The time spent in discussing any item in the accounts will be in inverse proportion to its size.

According to Peter Vaines and Roger Nuttall in their book "The Bottom Line"