Friday, November 29, 2013

Stranger than Fiction

This one's not a joke but it still qualifies for inclusion on this blog: - A film about a tax auditor starring Will Ferrell, Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson. It is called Stranger than fiction!

In the film Will Ferrell plays Harold Crick, a tax auditor who lives an excruciatingly well-planned life. He wakes one day to hear a woman's voice narrating his life and, in one disturbing scene, predicting his death. Crick sets out to find out whether he's mad but ends up on a trail that leads him to writer Karen Eiffel (Emma Thompson) - who, as chance would have it, is writing a book in narrative style about the life of Harold Crick, a tax auditor who lives an excruciatingly well-planned life. With his life in her hands, so to speak, their relationship takes a peculiar twist when Harold learns Eiffel's novel is not to have a happy ending.

In an earlier post I listed a number of other films that featured accountants as main characters. Have a guess as to how many are on the list before you check back to see. Please add any others of which you are aware by way of comments. Thanks.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Tax is for life, not just for Christmas

I do enjoy the ramblings of tax sage Murphy Richards who blogs for the Justice For Taxes Network.

Surprisingly I have not seen fit to reference any of his pieces here before. But this extract from a recent post about an upcoming lecture seems worth sharing:
"The theme of my lecture is that, rather like a dog, people commonly associate Christmas with taxation. It is probably because Christmas is a time for giving rather than receiving. Which is something that The State loves to hear from its citizens. 
But my deliberately provocative point is that we should also think about taxation the rest of the year too. 
As with a dog, being responsible for taxation requires year-long care. It involves administering worming tablets, vaccinations, sticking a microchip in the neck and carrying plastic bags in your pocket at all times. It means going out in the cold for long walks in the pouring rain, sometimes shouting its name, giving up and finding it waiting on the doorstep for you wagging its tail. 
Sometimes taxation will steal your roast dinner from the kitchen work surface whilst your back is turned and you will have to have a cup-a-soup instead.  
The only difference I can think of is that we shouldn’t have taxation put down when it becomes too burdensome to look after. And we shouldn’t leave it in kennels in the UK when we go abroad. You should get a pet passport for your UK tax liability and take it with you wherever you go. 
It is another one of my powerful metaphors that makes the point readily understandable and accessible to all."

Monday, November 25, 2013

The tax return limerick

Why does tax return time cause such stress?
Wretched forms to fill out—it’s a mess!
All confused, you say, “Heck!”
Then you write out a cheque
For what’s due or, at least, your best guess.

"Goats ate my accounts" and other excuses

Some of the most outrageous reasons given to Companies House for late filings over the last 12 months include: “goats ate my accounts” “...