What is a Time to Pay Arrangement?
The Time to Pay arrangement is a government initiative implemented in 2008. It was originally an attempt to combat the effects of the recession. It works by allowing struggling businesses to repay their outstanding PAYE/ NI or VAT liabilities in installments, rather than in one go. Usually, Time to Pay arrangements last either 6 or 12 months. However, they may last longer if there is a realistic prospect the debt will be repaid eventually.
What are the advantages of a Time to Pay Arrangement?
Obviously the HMRC liabilities will not simply disappear overnight. But seeking a Time to Pay arrangement does have its advantages, such as:
- You will be spreading out the cost of your liabilities over a period of time rather than all at once. This will improve cash flow and ensure your business has money to pay rent, wages and suppliers.
- Opting for a Time to Pay arrangement will demonstrate a willingness to repay liabilities. This helps your business remain on good terms with HMRC.
- Proactively seeking Time to Pay will decrease the likelihood of HMRC taking enforcement action against your business.
The process of a Time to Pay Arrangement
- Assess the situation
- Firstly, contact Wilson Field for an experienced insolvency consultant to understand your situation and recommend the best course of action. This will be via telephone conversation initially. A more thorough analysis is conducted later in a face to face consultation and a time and place to suit you.
- Repayment proposal
- We will assess your business’ finances and any correspondence with HMRC. Wilson Field will then devise a repayment proposal to be put forward to HMRC. Included within the proposal would be details of the circumstances surrounding your cash flow difficulties.
- Then, Wilson Field will use its years of experience working with the tax office of HMRC and utilise the strong relationships built over time. An experienced consultant will negotiate a structured repayment plan on your business’ behalf. During the course of this negotiation, Wilson Field will explain the reasons your business is unable to pay its tax bill. It demonstrates to HMRC that you fully intend on repaying your debt. The intended repayment period will be outlined, as will the suggested repayment amounts and intervals.
- Arrangement starts
- If HMRC accepts the proposal, the Time to Pay arrangement will commence. Payments will start to be made by your business towards HMRC on the agreed intervals for the specified period. The Time to Pay arrangement will conclude once all repayments have been made. Additionally, any interest will have been paid and tax returns submitted.
Is a Time to Pay arrangement right for me?
A Time to Pay arrangement is ideal for any type of business, be it a sole trader, partnership or limited company. It is useful for businesses where tax arrears have accrued during a cash flow shortage. This may be as a result of a bad debt or an unexpected expenditure. As a consequence of this cash shortage, NI contributions/ VAT or PAYE arrears may have accrued with HMRC. However, if the business has reasonable prospects of returning to financial stability, HMRC will usually accept a Time to Pay proposal. This assumes they feel they will receive their money owing in full within the time period. It will also assist with the proposal if the submitting of tax returns have been on time and paperwork is up to date.
What if HMRC refuse to accept my proposal?
HMRC may refuse to accept a Time to Pay arrangement. Factors which may work against you could include:
- Tax returns being late or overdue
- Previous arrangements not kept
- Lack of financial information to support your request
- Proposal considered unachievable by HMRC
Should HMRC refuse your proposal, Wilson Field will be able discuss alternative solutions for your business. This is with the intention to turnaround the business and return it to profitability. You can pursue other forms of company rescue with Wilson Field. As dedicated professionals, we will always be on hand to advise and guide you through the process.
What if I’m nearing the end of a Time to Pay arrangement and have missed some instalments?
Your business may be approaching the end of a Time to Pay arrangement with some repayments missing. A failure to take pro-active steps is likely to result in HMRC seeking to carry out enforcement action.
As soon as you become aware your business is unable to meet repayments, it is of vital importance that you contact Wilson Field without delay. Utilising years of experience working with HMRC, we will capitalise upon relationships within the tax department. As a result, Wilson Field may be able to renegotiate the terms of the Time to Pay arrangement. This may result in an extension of the repayment terms, buying your business time to get its finances straight. This will help to maintain a strong liquidity position in order to continue trading.
Wilson Field are experts in business recovery and restructuring and have worked with countless businesses to streamline their operations. If HMRC refuse to accept the renegotiated terms of the Time to Pay arrangement, alternative solutions are available to salvage your business.
Wilson Field offer a fast and efficient service with nationwide coverage from a network of regional offices. So we can arrange a free consultation at a time and location most convenient to you.
Is a Time to Pay arrangement right for your business? Get in touch today to arrange a free confidential consultation with no obligation.