Latest financial articles


July 12, 2018

Families should seek advice before paying huge bills for relatives’ care


Category: Financial News
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Thursfields Solicitors has issued crucial advice for families facing huge top-up bills towards the costs of their loved ones who are so ill that they need residential care.

The guidance comes after it was revealed that a pensioner’s personal savings were running out because she was having to pay £550 a week towards the residential care of her husband, who suffers from severe dementia.

The story was just one in a BBC report which says the current council-run and means-tested system is a “fundamental source of unfairness” that leaves many people without the social care support they desperately need.

Tracy Ashby, a senior associate solicitor at Thursfields, is an expert in care funding, safeguarding individuals and Court of Protection applications, and is a full member of Solicitors for the Elderly.

She said: “There’s often a lack of advice given to people in such stressful and upsetting situations.

“In this case, it could well be that the wife shouldn’t have been forced into such large top-ups, as it’s clearly having such a personal detrimental effect on her.”

Ms Ashby explained that local authorities have certain statutory obligations and responsibilities as outlined in the Care Act 2014, and that these are supposed to be based on person-centred considerations, rather than just financial circumstances.

“The additional payment must always be optional and never as a result of commissioning failures leading to a lack of choice,” she said.

“That means top-up fees shouldn’t be a standard request, but they often are because local authorities are regularly focused on finance first, care second. Unfortunately, this can happen because advice isn’t given or obtained when a relative is entering care.”

Ms Ashby urged people facing a situation where their loved ones need residential care to always seek professional legal advice to make sure they are treated fairly by the system.

She added: “The UK’s social care system is in disarray, as evidenced by the fact that the Green Paper on this subject due out before the summer recess has now been delayed to coincide with the NHS proposals in the Autumn.

“At this time of chaos, people need a trained solicitor who can outline what the rules actually are, what help is available and whether the NHS should contribute.

“Importantly, a solicitor trained in the complex detail of care costs can explain what to do if the local authority refuses to work with the family and help at a time when a dispute could cause further detriment to the person in care.

“Funds are limited but this shouldn’t mean that people should suffer, nor that self-funders should prop up the failing system.”

Ends (436 words)

For further information, please contact:

Dani James, Business Development Manager, Thursfields Solicitors
Email: djames@thursfields.co.uk Tel: 01905 677066

Or
Steve Dyson, ASAP PR – 01789 490786

www.thursfields.co.uk, Twitter - @Thursfields, LinkedIn - www.linkedin.com/company/thursfields

Notes to Editors
Thursfields Solicitors is one of the region’s longest established and reputable law firms, with more than 150 staff in eight offices across Worcestershire and the West Midlands. Thursfields Solicitors provides a full range of legal services to business and the private individual, including property, family, employment and commercial law as well as probate and litigation. The firm has offices in Worcester, Kidderminster, Halesowen, Sedgley, Stourport-on-Severn, Solihull and Birmingham.



April 25, 2018

Footballers and celebrities among those facing ruin as HMRC tax avoidance crackdown starts to bite


Category: Financial News
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Time is running out for a number of footballers, celebrities and wealthy individuals who invested in tax schemes, insolvency experts at corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma have warned.
Quantuma’s managing partner Carl Jackson said that as many as 65,000 individuals could have received an Accelerated Payment Notice (APN), follower or closure notice from HMRC.
HMRC is continuing its crackdown on tax avoidance schemes and many who used such schemes are now being hit with tax bills, plus penalties and interest, that could force them into bankruptcy, he said.
Jackson said: “When most of these individuals were introduced to these schemes, they thought they were investing in the UK film industry or helping with UK regional development, while others were simply following practices used in their working environment.
“At the time, few will have considered they were entering anything that people would portray as illegal, wrong or even immoral,” he said.
Many, by investing, believed they were simply deferring tax, he explained.
But five, ten or 15 years later they find themselves entangled in HMRC’s crackdown on tax avoidance, and some are now facing financial ruin.
Many did not realise the impact of their investment being topped up by loans, with the intention of creating further tax deferral.
Jackson continued: “Indeed, the situation for those affected may be further exacerbated if they also participated in Employee Benefit Trusts or Employer-Financed Retirement Benefits Scheme by the 2019 Loan Charge Rules which were introduced in the Finance Bill 2017.
“This states that if a loan in relation to a tax planning scheme is outstanding on 5 April 2019, it has to be declared on the individual’s personal tax return.”
He pointed out that in the past decade, many people had seen dramatic changes in their lives. A footballer, for example, may have retired and now be living on a fixed income. For ex-professionals and those in the media, work can be patchy and so earnings will peak and trough over their career.
In some cases, divorces and subsequent settlements have materially changed an individual’s finances, their assets and net worth. Others find they have limited liquidity with monies tied up in assets and investments.
Jackson said it’s vital that anyone facing financial concerns, and in some cases financial difficulties, take advice as early as possible so they can understand their options and engage with HMRC positively to seek a settlement before it was too late for them.
He said: “The media spotlight has so far focused on the headline cases of well-known sports personalities and showbiz celebrities who put money into tax avoidance schemes, but it’s important to understand the background and how it impacts on all those affected.
“From the early noughties a number of schemes, such as the film partnership arrangements, were set up and marketed heavily as a means of deferring and sheltering tax.
“Clearly this was attractive to higher earners, many of whom are unlikely to have considered, or indeed understood, the detail.”
HMRC never accepted these schemes and, following a change in the law in 2014, the Government enabled HMRC to demand payment of the tax benefit received.
“HMRC’s principal weapon to date has been the APN which identifies the tax HMRC reckons you owe and calls on you to pay it on account.
“At best, this can cause cashflow problems and in many cases it could lead to the individual having to consider bankruptcy.”
Quantuma is urging anyone who was enrolled in a tax avoidance scheme in the past or who has received an APN to take professional advice urgently.
“If you have this problem on your doorstep, it’s clear it won’t go away and the best solution is actively to engage with HMRC, either directly or through experienced advisers, to seek to resolve it.
“It’s always good to talk, and talking to HMRC about your tax position is no exception.”
He said those affected are not limited to those with a high profile, and that professionals, business owners, family members and a wide range of individuals who were earning well in the middle 2000s have found themselves in this position.
Jackson added: “In the case of footballers, it is often more the ex-professional that is now being hit. Perhaps they had a good career, a high-earning season or two or they won one or two international caps. Moreover, they were playing at a time when these schemes were being promoted actively.
“Their earnings will have peaked in a relatively short period, and they often finished their playing career with a rough Plan B for financing the rest of their lives.
“To be hit now with a significant tax bill, a blast from the past, will simply be too much financially for many, but equally focused engagement with HMRC can often enable them, with the aid of their advisers, to find a solution.
“We would urge anyone who is aware they have a problem to act if they haven’t already and take professional advice.
“APNs and other HMRC notices for large sums are very scary documents, but we can sit down with you, assess your assets and finances in their entirety and help you formulate a plan.
“Doing nothing is no longer a choice nor an alternative.”
Ends (872 words)
For further information, please contact:
Marie Wadeson, Director of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, High Holborn House, 52-54 High Holborn, London, WC1V 6RL
Tel: 07464 545678
www.quantuma.com
or Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate restructuring, insolvency and business advisory firm delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Birmingham, Bristol, Manchester, Ringwood and Weymouth.



March 2, 2018

Restaurant chains facing multiple cost rises in oversaturated market


Category: Financial News
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High street restaurant chains are facing multiple sharp cost rises in rents, business rates, ingredients and wages while already struggling in an oversaturated market.
That’s the warning from an expert at corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma, speaking in the wake of news that Italian restaurant chain Prezzo is set to close 100 venues in an attempt to rescue the business.
Carl Jackson, managing partner of Quantuma, said: “We are increasingly witnessing market saturation, with the public’s disposable income just not increasing at a commensurate rate to match the number of eateries that have opened in the recent past.
“In addition to this, many restaurant chains are also facing sharp costs rises in the areas of rent, rates, wages and ingredients.
“In some cases, landlords have offered ‘rent-free periods’ for new venues – typically out of town shopping centres – which while initially attractive can easily create a ‘false’ profit position in the short-term followed by a sudden cash-flow drain when those periods expire, and rent must be paid.’’
“On top of this, rateable values are soaring depending on where the venues are based in the UK, with the impact in London potentially resulting in rises of as much as 400 per cent.
“Food inflation also means that the price of sourcing ingredients has increased, which places an increased burden on margins.
“Meanwhile, restaurants typically employ people on hourly wages based on the minimum wage, which is due to rise from 7.50 to 7.83 per hour in April.
“But they are also facing growing pressures to apply a National Living Wage which is 8.75 across the UK and as much 10.20 in London, which is having a significant impact on payroll costs alongside the costs of implementing and offering auto-enrolment to large workforces.
“Differentiation has also been an issue with many comparable chains bringing similar offerings to the marketplace, resulting in the need to utilise special offers to attract custom, a further negative impact on margins if the volume of sales do not increase sufficiently.”
The challenges faced by struggling restaurants were previously seen at the end of January when burger chain Byron announced it was closing up to 20 restaurants, nearly a third of its outlets.
And earlier in January, Jamie’s Italian chain announced the closure of 12 of its restaurants in a similar restructure.
Mr Jackson of Quantuma added: “To put it bluntly, the increasingly abundant sites that have been opened by restaurant chains in particular are vying for a portion of a market that is just not increasing in size.
“There are too many restaurant chains on our high streets for the marketplace to support, while that marketplace is getting much more expensive to operate within.
“The businesses involved need to take heed of what’s become a perfect storm and should take the appropriate action now, regarding cost management and efficiencies, before it’s too late.”
Ends (477 words)
For further information, please contact:
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678
www.quantuma.com
or Steve Dyson, ASAP PR – 0781 8004575
Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate restructuring, insolvency and business advisory firm delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Birmingham, Bristol and Manchester.



February 20, 2018

Risk of insolvent estates is on the increase – Quantuma


Category: Financial News
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More and more pensioners risk dying owing more than they left in their estate, corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma is warning.

Mark Roach, a director at Quantuma, said: “With a growing number of people living off their property equity, coupled with other debts in retirement, there is a growing risk of deceased estates actually being insolvent.

“This can be a very challenging and difficult problem for any family to deal with at a time when levels of emotion and grief will already be very high,” he said.

He was commenting on research by Prudential which has revealed that nearly one in five people who are expecting to retire this year still have debts to clear, with pensioners retiring in debt owing an average of £33,900 (Research Plus independent survey for Prudential).

“The research suggests that those with debts planning to retire in 2018 will take an average of three and a half years to get out of debt. However, 14 per cent will take seven years or more to get out of debt and six per cent will never clear their debts.

“While many of us dream of retiring early to sunnier shores, there are growing indications that the older members of our society are having to work much later in life to simply make ends meet,” he said.

This situation will probably only worsen in the next decade as the state pension date is pushed further and further back, with people having to earn for longer periods until they can afford to retire.

Later retirement is compounded by historic low levels of interest rates, minimising returns on savings, with older generations no longer being able to live off savings and pensions income alone. Eating into capital is an ever-decreasing circle each year.

Mortgages and credit cards remain the biggest debt issues for pensioners with 38 percent of those in debt still paying off mortgages at retirement, and 53 per cent still having credit card debt.

There is also growing evidence that equity draw down schemes are being used not only to fund lifestyle choices such as a new car or holidays, but are also being used to repay debts prior to retirement and, more worryingly, to fund normal day to day living expenses.

Data released by the Equity Release Council has revealed that recent records have been broken as unprecedented Q4 activity sees 2017 lending reach £3.06bn with annual growth at a 15-year high (Equity Release Council, 2018).

Mark Roach said: “Many parents like the idea of leaving an inheritance, such as the family home, to their children or extended family. Some people have even managed their own financial affairs and retirement planning expecting some form of inheritance from their parents later in life.

“However, with historic low interest rate returns on investments, later state retirement dates, increasing levels of debts, and much higher care costs in old age there is a risk that an increasing number of estates will be left with very little, if anything to pass on to their families.

“We are expecting to see an increasing level of insolvent deceased estates.

"If you are a family member or executor struggling to deal with these financial issues, then it is important to take advice as quickly as possible. Taking the right advice can lift the pressure and assist at a time that can already be difficult to cope with,” he said.

Ends (568 words)

For further information, please contact:

Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257

Or

Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, High Holborn House, 52-54 High Holborn, London WC1V 6RL
Tel: 07464 545678

www.quantuma.com

Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate recovery and business advisory practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.



February 15, 2018

Better than expected GDP results should be used to support Midlands SMEs


Category: Financial News
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The Chancellor should use better than expected growth figures as the foundation to set out more support for SMEs in his Spring Statement, according to national audit, tax and advisory firm Crowe Clark Whitehill.

Johnathan Dudley, Midlands managing partner and national head of manufacturing, said the revised forecasts meant the Chancellor would have more money than he anticipated in the November Budget.

“Every Chancellor uses the forecasts produced by the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) for the UK’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and GDP growth as the root for the calculation of their tax revenues in setting the budget.

“We estimate that every 0.01% that the OBR forecast is out by, per annum, equates to about £0.5 billion in tax revenues. So, if growth forecasts are revised upwards, then the Chancellor would have more money than planned,” he said.

Dudley is urging the Chancellor to use this windfall and give it to SMEs in grants to boost productivity.

“The UK drastically needs to improve its productivity, so any additional funds the Chancellor may have could be better spent on boosting the positive contributions SMEs make to the economy,” he said.

Dudley also stressed the need for a ‘business as usual’ approach to the domestic economy, in the light of ongoing Brexit negotiations and concerns.

“Whatever agreement we end up with in the future, it is still vital to support SMEs as they represent the core of the economy, nowhere more so than in the home of the Midlands Engine.

“At a time when SMEs are being put under even more pressure to handle administrative issues such as auto-enrolment, GDPR and a host of other regulatory changes, all hitting this year, support for the engine room of our economy is crucial.”

Ends (290 words)

Contacts:

Miriam Sherwood, Marketing Manager (Regions), Crowe Clark Whitehill LLP. Tel: 0121 543 1900

Notes to Editors:
Crowe Clark Whitehill
1. Crowe Clark Whitehill is an audit, tax and advisory firm and the UK member of Crowe Horwath International, the eighth largest global professional service organisation with over 200 independent member firms operating from offices around the world.
2. The firm has eight offices in the UK, with more than 80 partners and over 600 members of staff.
3. Crowe Clark Whitehill are leading advisors to the UK mid-market, and hold a top 10 position in the 2017 Corporate AIM Adviser Rankings in Technology, Basic Materials, Oil and Gas, Industrials, Consumer Goods and Financials.
4. The firm was named: Top Charity Auditor of the Year (Charity Financial Audit League Table 2009 -2017) and Best Tax Investigations Team (Taxation Awards 2016).
5. For more information, visit: www.croweclarkwhitehill.co.uk

Follow Crowe Clark Whitehill on LinkedIn

Follow Crowe Clark Whitehill on Twitter @CroweCW



January 31, 2018

Quantuma appointed administrators as Banbury-based school photography business closes


Category: Financial News
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Administrators from corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma have been appointed at a Banbury-based school photography and marketing services business.

Partners Frank Wessely and Chris Newell were appointed as administrators to Ward-Hendry Ltd on 18 January 2018.

Prior to their appointment, all 35 staff had been made redundant on Wednesday 20 December, when it became clear that the business could not continue.

The business was founded in 2005 and had a turnover of approximately £2.1 million per annum.

Frank Wessely said: “In the second half of 2017 the company experienced cashflow problems. In December 2017 it was clear the company could no longer pay its debts as and when they fell due.

“Despite protracted negotiations with various unconnected parties, we have been unable to agree a sale for part of the business. Therefore, assets will be sold for the benefit of secured and preferential creditors.”

Ends (146 words)

For further information, please contact:

Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
Or
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678

www.quantuma.com

Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate recovery and business advisory practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.



January 26, 2018

More debtors opting for Individual Voluntary Arrangements


Category: Financial News
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The number of individual going bankrupt in the UK has been clouded by the arrival of “bankruptcy lite” – the Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) - according to personal insolvency expert Mark Sands, a partner at corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma.

The latest figures for 2017 released by The Insolvency Service show that while the figure for individuals opting for bankruptcy as a way out of debt was up by 10%, the number opting for IVAs was up nearly 20%.

In an IVA, the individual reschedules debts and agrees to much lower repayments. In 2017, the number resorting to IVAs hit a record of 59,220.

Mark Sands said: “The introduction of IVAs has somewhat clouded the overall statistics, but what we can determine is that there is no recent consistent trend in personal insolvency rates.

“In particular, the number of IVAs, a flexible alternative to bankruptcy which is popular with those with multiple consumer debts which they are struggling to juggle, has risen and fallen each quarter throughout 2017.

“The market for advice to consumers in debt has moved in focus from debt management plans, an informal arrangement with no debts forgiven, to IVAs where the debtor has more certainty in return for making regular payments towards their debts,” he said.

But he pointed out that even if overall personal insolvency numbers remained at the same levels in 2017, then another 100,000 people would still enter into some form of personal insolvency in 2018.

Ends (244 words)

For further information, please contact:

Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257

Or

Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,

Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS

Tel: 07464 545678

www.quantuma.com

Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate recovery and business advisory practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.



November 27, 2017

Future secured as Investment firm acquires Avon Steel Company Limited


Category: Financial News
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Restructuring specialists at Quantuma have helped rescue a south west-based steel company that had run into cashflow difficulties, saving 49 jobs.
Graham Randall and Mark Roach from the Bristol office of Quantuma were approached by the directors of Avon Steel Company Ltd in early November after the company experienced trading difficulties following a period of heavy losses.
Avon Steel was founded in 1981 and services the south west and south wales from its branches in Midsomer Norton and Plymouth. The family-run firm had built up to a turnover of £12 million.
Heavy losses during 2017 were compounded by a legal dispute that led to credit insurers withdrawing cover, leaving the company unable to obtain supplies of steel to satisfy customer orders.
The company engaged Graham Randall and Mark Roach from restructuring and corporate advisory specialists Quantuma to look for a buyer in early November.
After an intense initial period speaking to more than two dozen interested parties, the company entered into a brief exclusivity period with Breal Capital before completing a deal on 22 November.
Graham Randall said: “Trading conditions this year were very tough and the company very quickly found itself facing potential closure as supplies and consequently cash dried up.
“There was a very real threat that if a share sale could not be achieved the company faced administration, but the directors took action quickly and instructed Quantuma to look for a buyer in an accelerated timeframe.
He added: “There were significant levels of interest in the business and we are delighted that Breal Capital, who already own successful companies in the sector, have used their financial backing and industry expertise to act decisively in securing the future of the company and the jobs of its 49 staff.”
Ends (291 words)

For further information, please contact:
Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257

Or

Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678
www.quantuma.com

Notes to Editors

Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate recovery and business advisory practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.



October 16, 2017

Hosking to head up Quantuma’s growth in London


Category: Financial News
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Quantuma, the corporate recovery and business advisory firm, has announced that partner Andrew Hosking has been appointed Head of London office.

The announcement comes as Quantuma prepares to move later this year to larger offices in London capable of supporting the firm’s continuing growth.

Andrew Hosking led the administration of Europe’s largest legal sector insolvency earlier this year – King & Wood Mallesons (KWM).

He said: “The further development and growth of our London office is a key part of our future growth which underpins the firm’s success.

“London will drive our increasing caseload. It is also the hub for larger, complex cases, typically those with an international dimension.”

Founded in January 2013, Quantuma has grown rapidly from one Southampton office, to eight including London, Birmingham, Manchester, Marlow, Watford, Brighton and Bristol.

The London office opened Fitzroy Square in April 2014 and moved to Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue in December 2015, but the firm has already outgrown the available space there.

Managing partner Carl Jackson said: “London is a pivotal location for us, and Andrew is the man to lead our growth there.

“He is well known in the City following his appointment on KWM, and he will be able to call on not only the expertise of those already in the London office, but also our specialists in corporate finance, risk management, forensic and other advisory services as we announce them.”

Ends (232 words)

For further information, please contact:

Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678

www.quantuma.com

or Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257

Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate restructuring, insolvency and business advisory firm delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Birmingham, Bristol and Manchester.



October 10, 2017

Mark Lucas joins Quantuma to launch new corporate finance service


Category: Financial News
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Corporate recovery specialists and business advisers Quantuma are to launch a new service with the arrival of partner Mark Lucas.
He will be based in Quantuma’s Southampton office but will have a national remit to grow the new corporate finance offering.
Quantuma managing partner Carl Jackson said: “This is the latest stage in the implementation of our business plan to grow not only our national network but also our service lines.
“Mark acts for a wide range of clients across many sectors, enabling them to create, build, grow and ultimately realise their investment and hard work in the most tax-efficient manner.
“He is a welcome addition to our team and we believe his arrival and the launch of our corporate finance offering is an exciting step forward for Quantuma.”
He joins from Moore Stephens, where he was a partner, and has extensive experience advising clients in the Thames Valley and south of England.
Mark Lucas said: “I have been impressed by the spectacular growth of Quantuma in the past four and a half years.
“This is a firm that has a clear vision for its future and I am very pleased to be joining Quantuma to launch what is a new service line for their clients and contacts.”
He will not only be working with Quantuma’s growing client base to offer his extensive corporate finance experience, but also with corporates across the firm’s national network.
He said: “Quantuma has been largely known for its work in company restructuring and insolvency, but the vision is to create a full service advisory offering.
“We will now be able to offer strategic consultancy and corporate finance services to the entrepreneurial market.
“We think there is a gap in the middle market between the major accountancy firms, who are based on an audit and compliance offering, and firms that are essentially corporate finance boutiques.”
Significant deals that have benefited from Mark Lucas’ guidance include the £23 million management buyout (MBO) of BOFA International which was supported by LDC.
BOFA International, based in Poole, is the world’s leading designer and manufacturer of fume extraction systems.
He also advised on the MBO and sales of International Logistics Group, Grace Personnel Ltd, and Classic Bag Company.
He added: “We will be bringing our skills and experience to bear on behalf of Quantuma’s corporate client base and helping to support the firm’s continuing growth across the UK.”

Quantuma has continued its growth in 2017, and has grown its six office network across the south of England in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton and Bristol to eight with new openings in Manchester, serving the north west, and Birmingham, serving the Midlands.
The arrival in the Spring of Mike Wright saw forensic accounting and fraud investigations added to the firm’s service lines.
Growth in 2017 has already resulted in the Bristol and Southampton offices relocating to larger premises.
Quantuma recorded 21% growth in the financial year to 31 March 2017 and now employs over 100 staff.
Ends (496 words)
For further information, please contact:
Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
or
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678
www.quantuma.com
Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading restructuring and insolvency practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Birmingham and Manchester.


Mark Lucas joins Quantuma to launch new corporate finance service


Category: Financial News
Click for larger image
Corporate recovery specialists and business advisers Quantuma are to launch a new service with the arrival of partner Mark Lucas.
He will be based in Quantuma’s Southampton office but will have a national remit to grow the new corporate finance offering.
Quantuma managing partner Carl Jackson said: “This is the latest stage in the implementation of our business plan to grow not only our national network but also our service lines.
“Mark acts for a wide range of clients across many sectors, enabling them to create, build, grow and ultimately realise their investment and hard work in the most tax-efficient manner.
“He is a welcome addition to our team and we believe his arrival and the launch of our corporate finance offering is an exciting step forward for Quantuma.”
He joins from Moore Stephens, where he was a partner, and has extensive experience advising clients in the Thames Valley and south of England.
Mark Lucas said: “I have been impressed by the spectacular growth of Quantuma in the past four and a half years.
“This is a firm that has a clear vision for its future and I am very pleased to be joining Quantuma to launch what is a new service line for their clients and contacts.”
He will not only be working with Quantuma’s growing client base to offer his extensive corporate finance experience, but also with corporates across the firm’s national network.
He said: “Quantuma has been largely known for its work in company restructuring and insolvency, but the vision is to create a full service advisory offering.
“We will now be able to offer strategic consultancy and corporate finance services to the entrepreneurial market.
“We think there is a gap in the middle market between the major accountancy firms, who are based on an audit and compliance offering, and firms that are essentially corporate finance boutiques.”
Significant deals that have benefited from Mark Lucas’ guidance include the £23 million management buyout (MBO) of BOFA International which was supported by LDC.
BOFA International, based in Poole, is the world’s leading designer and manufacturer of fume extraction systems.
He also advised on the MBO and sales of International Logistics Group, Grace Personnel Ltd, and Classic Bag Company.
He added: “We will be bringing our skills and experience to bear on behalf of Quantuma’s corporate client base and helping to support the firm’s continuing growth across the UK.”

Quantuma has continued its growth in 2017, and has grown its six office network across the south of England in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton and Bristol to eight with new openings in Manchester, serving the north west, and Birmingham, serving the Midlands.
The arrival in the Spring of Mike Wright saw forensic accounting and fraud investigations added to the firm’s service lines.
Growth in 2017 has already resulted in the Bristol and Southampton offices relocating to larger premises.
Quantuma recorded 21% growth in the financial year to 31 March 2017 and now employs over 100 staff.
Ends (496 words)
For further information, please contact:
Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
or
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678
www.quantuma.com
Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading restructuring and insolvency practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Birmingham and Manchester.



July 28, 2017

Rise of personal contract plans is driving dangerous levels of consumer debt – Quantuma


Category: Financial News
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The rise of “personal contract plans” as a way of acquiring expensive cars could be driving the risk of another credit crunch, according to corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma.

Graham Randall, a partner in the firm’s Bristol office, said that total car loans had more than doubled between 2012 and 2016 – from £28 billion to £58 billion.

The Bank of England has already expressed concern about the rapidly increasing exposure of UK banks to motor finance loans.

Graham Randall said: “The number of new and expensive looking cars on the road seems to be increasing but how can most people afford such luxuries?”

The answer, he explained, lay in the rise of the personal contract plan (PCP) which requires no deposit and has much lower monthly payments than traditional higher purchase arrangements.

PCPs are for a fixed term and at the end of the term, the driver either makes a large “balloon” payment or returns the car.

The dealer either gets all the cash and interest generated by the loan or, in the case of someone who can't afford the balloon payment, the dealer can sell the car again.

Mr Randall said: “The Bank of England recently estimated major UK banks’ total exposures to UK car finance to be around £20 billion.

“The rapid acceleration of car loan growth has triggered alarm amongst regulators and the sharp increase in UK household borrowing to buy new cars is fuelling concerns of an economic crash if interest rates and unemployment rise.

“To put these numbers into perspective, the recent Italian bank bailout cost £15 billion,” he pointed out.

Historically, car finance was a matter of a driver paying a deposit followed by monthly payments, with interest, until the loan was repaid. In 2008, a majority of car loans from dealers in the UK were financed this way.

Today, however, the vast majority of dealer loans are in the form of PCPs, the fastest growing part of consumer credit.

The value of the car at the end of the term will depend on how well the driver treated it, or on how the second-hand car market is performing.

In a downturn, drivers who fall on hard times can simply return the car and walk away from the rest of the loan.

Mr Randall said: “Some lenders make loans assuming the resale value of the car will rise against their initial estimates but if dealers are stuck trying to sell a car in a recession, when prices are likely to be plummeting it will leave dealerships and the lenders funding them dangerously exposed.

“While we don’t want to see action taken that will jeopardise the current success of the UK automotive industry, we need to ensure we don’t see car sales going through a boom and bust cycle.

“This helps no one – least of all the manufacturers, and the scale of the current exposure to PCPs is raising questions about whether bank lending in this area is sustainable.

“The Government may need to consider a minimum deposit, perhaps a fixed percentage of the on-the-road price of a car, in order to avoid the kind of banking crisis that could have a knock-on effect throughout the economy.

“And with enough uncertainty already around over our economic future post-Brexit, the last thing we need is more bad news on the economy,” he said.

Ends (559 words)

For further information, please contact:
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678
Or
Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
www.quantuma.com
@Quantuma1
Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading corporate recovery and business advisory practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.



July 24, 2017

Ignoring cybercrime could lead to crippling fines, Quantuma warns


Category: Financial News
Click for larger image
Huge fines could cripple SMEs who ignore the threat of cybercrime, according to corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma.
The warning comes after a government regulator showed its teeth by fining a company £60,000 after it suffered a cyber attack.
The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) took the action after investigating Berkshire-based Boomerang Video Ltd and finding it failed to take basic steps to stop its website being attacked.
Carl Jackson, managing partner at Quantuma, said: “Regulators are cracking down on SMEs who don’t have proper cybercrime defences, and this can result in a double-whammy financial hit.
“Not only do companies face all the operational disruption and costs that website attacks cause, but they then will face stiff penalties for not having proper procedures in place to deal with the problem in the first place.
“In some cases, the total costs to the business caused by the initial attacks and then huge fines could even mean they end up being pushed into insolvency.”
The situation is set to become more serious from May 2018 when the new General Data Protection Legislation (GDPR) comes into force, laying down minimum standards for companies’ anti-cybercrime systems and procedures.
Mr Jackson added: “From next year, fines against firms who ignore cybercrime could be a lot higher and will probably hit businesses who are already under financial pressure – as that’s one of the reasons why they won’t have invested in defences.”
Quantuma is highlighting the importance of the Cyber Essentials scheme developed by government and industry which clearly explains the basic controls businesses should have as part of what’s known as “10 Steps to Cyber Security”.
The scheme also offers an Assurance Framework which enables companies to demonstrate to customers, investors, insurers and others that they have taken essential precautions.
Mike Wright, partner at Quantuma, said: “Taking the necessary steps to defend against cybercrime needn’t be disproportionality expensive for companies if they follow the guidance in the Cyber Essentials scheme.
“You wouldn’t leave your house or office without locking the front door, or leave the cash register open and unattended.
“The same now applies to online files and personal data. Cyber security is as important as general business or personal security.
“Regardless of your size, if you are a business that handles personal information then data protection laws apply to you, and you must carefully put your defences into place.”
Quantuma is one of the UK’s fastest growing corporate recovery and business advisory firms, with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.
Ends (421 words)
For further information, please contact:
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678
Or
Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
www.quantuma.com
@Quantuma1
Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading restructuring and insolvency practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.



July 11, 2017

Quantuma appointed as Store Twenty One enters compulsory liquidation


Category: Financial News
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Beleaguered fashion chain Store Twenty One has finally collapsed into compulsory liquidation.
Simon Bonney, Carl Jackson and Paul Zalkin, partners at corporate recovery and business advisory firm Quantuma, have been appointed to handle the liquidation.
The retail firm had been battling for survival after failing to secure investment following a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) in July 2016 which saw the closure of around 200 shops.
The latest decision means the closure of Store Twenty One’s remaining 122 stores and the loss of 900 jobs, prior to Quantuma’s appointment.
The beginning of the end was signalled in April this year when the company’s management filed a notice to appoint administrators after Store Twenty One was served with a winding-up notice by HM Revenue & Customs for breaching the terms of the CVA.
This administration application was withdrawn but then a second application was made in June and again withdrawn prior to the court finally issuing an order to wind the company up.
Quantuma partner Simon Bonney said: “It is very sad that matters have got to the stage where all the stores were closed by management on Friday following a prolonged period of uncertainty leading up to the liquidation.
“We are now in the process of conducting an orderly wind down and we would welcome contact from any interested parties who may wish to purchase assets of the company.”
Store Twenty One’s turnover in recent years had declined from £95 million to £57 million with sustained losses over the past few years.
Following the winding up order, the case was passed to the Official Receiver’s office and a Secretary of State appointment of Quantuma as liquidators quickly followed.
Simon Bonney said: “The traditional retail sector continues to face significant challenges, not least with the changes in business rates. The company was founded in 1932 and unfortunately it is another example of the difficulties arising in the current economy.”

Ends (317 words)

For more information, contact:

Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678

Or

Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257

www.quantuma.com
@Quantuma1

Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading restructuring and insolvency practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol, Manchester and Birmingham.



April 11, 2017

Quantuma recovery plan rescues Hertfordshire engineering firm


Category: Financial News
Click for larger image
An eight-month rescue plan devised and implemented by corporate recovery specialists Quantuma for a Hertfordshire engineering firm has paid off.
In August last year Quantuma partners Simon Bonney and Andrew Hosking were appointed joint administrators of PaveTesting Ltd, based at Unit 2, Iceni Court, Letchworth Garden City.
The company designs and manufactures pavement testing equipment, supplying government agencies, major civil engineering contractors and airport operators worldwide.
Custom-built to order, its machines are heavily involved in maintaining road and runway surfaces.
Simon Bonney said the business hit problems in 2016 following “challenging conditions in the marketplace”.
“We set out to try and save the business as a going concern – it makes high quality products and is a world leader in its field,” he said.
In August last year, the company was severely distressed with no cash to meet the next wage bill, and the board set about working with Quantuma to establish the viability of the business.
To provide short term protection, PaveTesting was placed into administration with Simon Bonney and Andrew Hosking as administrators.
Quantuma negotiated funding to meet the ongoing business costs, while discussions took place with the board of directors and shareholders to enable a rescue plan to be delivered.
Simon Bonney said: “As a result, the company recently exited the administration process via a Company Voluntary arrangement under which the majority of creditors have already been paid in full.
“It is a real pleasure to be able to design and implement a rescue plan.
“While it would have been easier simply to allow the business to fail, we were willing to fund ongoing costs which has produced the best possible outcome for all stakeholders and saved a genuine UK engineering and manufacturing business.”
The news will also be welcomed by the company’s supply chain locally as machines are assembled from parts made within 25 miles of the factory.

Ends (310 words)

For further information, please contact:
Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
or
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678

www.quantuma.com

Notes to Editors
Quantuma LLP is a leading restructuring and insolvency practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton, Bristol and Manchester.



March 15, 2017

Days are numbered for ‘sexy tax planning’ firms


Category: Financial News
Click for larger image
The accountancy profession could see a whole tier of firms collapsing or merging themselves out of existence as the full implications of the penalties for the promotion of tax avoidance schemes hit home.

That’s the message from business restricting and insolvency specialists Quantuma.

Brian Burke, a director at Quantuma, who has tracked government policy on tax avoidance as it has evolved, said legislation to be introduced has a very broad scope in allowing advisers, accountants and lawyers to be targeted.

“While some experts have suggested that new measures to tackle tax avoidance will have a limited or negligible impact, we are of the view that the recent changes have taken huge strides towards eradicating tax avoidance,” he said.

“New measures extend and reinforce those that have gone before them. They need to be considered as part of a suite of tools that are now available to HMRC rather than individually and in isolation.”

The areas of strengthened rules in the Budget on disclosure of promoted tax avoidance schemes, a requirement to those offshore to correct previous non-compliance and a new penalty for promoters and facilitators that fail in the Courts are not designed to generate anywhere near the sums of the Accelerated Payment Notices enacted in the Finance Bill 2014 or indeed the loan charge provisions of the proposed Finance Bill 2017 that will then be applied in April 2019.

He said: “Those were designed for the heavy lifting. The new measures, including penalties for professionals and advisers, are part of the finer touches.

“Each has its place, and with every measure one less corner is left in the shade and for those who fall foul they will find they have considerable implications.”

The tough financial penalties for professionals who assist a taxpayer or business to use a tax avoidance arrangement that is then defeated by HMRC was flagged in last year’s Autumn statement.

It is expected to raise £115 million over the next five years - not a huge sum in itself.

But, as Brian Burke points out: “How many professionals will be left that are willing to recommend tax avoidance? This was once a considerable industry in its own right.

“Advisers, accountants and lawyers will now work toward the aims of the Government and HMRC and actively prevent tax avoidance.”

For those professionals who have, or continue to, enable they will now be faced with fines of up to 100% of the tax their client avoided.

The government has said it expects these penalties, which comes into force in July, to raise at least £10 million in the coming tax year, rising to £50 million in 2018-19.
That’s over half of the £115 million expected to be raised by April 2019.

Brian Burke added: “While it is clear there are practices and advisers to whom this legislation would have been applicable that are no longer operating, there are others still actively working with their clients.

“For those that are continuing to enable and support, there is a very broad scope that allows lawyers, accountants and advisers to be targeted.

“Those who have a legacy of having engaged, where a scheme is yet to be defeated and clients have not yet sought settlement, may be caught if and when HMRC defeat the schemes.

“In both instances, they will soon be facing a very real threat with considerable financial consequences,” he warned.

Ends (562 words)

For further information, please contact:

Andy Skinner, Managing Director, ASAP PR – 07990 978257
or
Marie Wadeson, Head of Marketing,
Quantuma LLP, Vernon House, 23 Sicilian Avenue, London, WC1A 2QS
Tel: 07464 545678

www.quantuma.com

Notes to Editors

Quantuma LLP is a leading restructuring and insolvency practice delivering partner-led solutions to businesses and individuals facing financial distress with offices in London, Southampton, Marlow, Watford, Brighton and Bristol.



April 11, 2016

Dividend changes demand a top-to-toe review of your finances


Category: Financial News
Click for larger image
The Government’s dividend changes open up a Pandora’s Box for business owners.

That is the message from John Male, managing director of EFG Independent Financial Advisers, with offices in Birmingham, Wolverhampton and London.

In effect it means a complete review of finances is the wisest option, he noted.

From April 6, the ten per cent dividend tax credit is being scrapped and replaced by a new dividend allowance of £5,000.

This means the first £5,000 of any dividends will be tax-free for all investors, except trustees, with any amount over this being charged at 7.5 per cent for basic rate taxpayers, 32.5 per cent for higher rate taxpayers; and 38.1 per cent for additional rate taxpayers.

It is a mixed bag of consequences.

In the case of dividends below £5,000 it means no change in tax for those on the basic rate, while higher rate and additional rate taxpayers stand to gain as they will pay £1,250 and £1,530 less tax respectively. Trustees of discretionary trusts will be worse off. For dividends above £5,000, basic rate taxpayers are worse off from £5,001, higher rate taxpayers are worse off from £21,667, and additional rate taxpayers are worse off from £25,250.

Mr Male said: “For business owners it means possibly boosting dividend payments this tax year or bringing forward any dividend that may otherwise be paid after April 6. They should ensure shares go into the right hands – paying them to a spouse or civil partner will mean they can use their dividend allowance too.

“It would be a good idea to make a pension contribution to extend basic rate tax band. And then we come to the crunch question – is it still worth paying yourself in dividends? It probably still is but there isn’t much in it any more.”

He went on: “For clients investing in funds that are taxed as dividends there is a whole host of further considerations – get your adviser to take you through them.

“But, for example, there are opportunities to spread portfolios between married couples and civil partners to maximise dividend allowances, CGT exemptions, personal allowances, and basic rate tax bands, shelter investments in an ISA, SIPP or alternatives, and explore the use of onshore investment bonds, particularly for trusts.

“I know this all sounds a bit like painting the house – as soon as you get one room done it shows up all the issues with the rest, but it really does mark a propitious moment to spring clean those finances.”

Ends (415 words)

For further information, please contact:

John Male, Managing Director,

EFG Independent Financial Advisers Limited, 33 Great Charles Street, Birmingham, B3 3JN.

0121 200 2255

www.efg-ifa.com

EFG Independent Financial Advisers offers a variety of solutions encompassing personal, family and business aspects, whether for wealth protection, family assets, wealth development, wealth preservation or retirement planning. The firm has six advisers in Wolverhampton, four in Birmingham and three in London, all of the highest calibre and free to act in their clients’ best interests.

EFG Independent Financial Advisers Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Prepared and issued by Andy Skinner of ASAP PR – 01789 490786, mobile 07990 978257.



March 3, 2016

Tot up your tax allowances before April 5 or lose them forever


Category: Financial News
Click for larger image
Taxpayers have just weeks to make sure they claim all the allowances and reliefs they are due.

EFG Independent Financial Advisers warns they could miss out if they do not meet the April 5 tax year deadline.

Jacqui Searle, senior tax manager at EFG-IFA, which has offices in Birmingham, Wolverhampton and London, said: “There are many allowances and reliefs which reduce tax bills that are linked to the tax year end – if not addressed, the tax saving for the year will be lost.

“It is an opportunity for cost saving and significant sums can be involved. Make the most of your entitlement.”

Examples include contributions to individual savings accounts of £15,240 which can then grow tax free.

Everyone under age 75 can contribute to a registered pension scheme, regardless of earnings, up to £2,880 per tax year and qualify for tax relief. The Government then adds tax relief so the pension pot receives £3,600 in total.

Higher earners should consider making use of any unused allowance before it is lost, especially where their potential for contributions in future is being curtailed.

Ms Searle pointed out that an individual can realise chargeable gains of up to £11,100 in 2015/16 without triggering a Capital Gains Tax liability.

Similarly, gifts of up to £3,000 in a tax year will be exempt from Inheritance Tax.

“This exemption can be carried forward for one year so if no gifts were made in 2014/15, then £6,000 of gifts can be made in 2015/16. The 2015/16 exemption will be used first.

“There are other reliefs for gifts which may also be relevant so the £3,000 exemption may still be available.

“Additionally, if you have a gap in your national insurance record which will affect your entitlement to the state pension, you can usually make up the shortfall for the current tax year and the previous six tax years.”

She stressed “If you think you may have overpaid tax for any earlier years then a claim for repayment of tax for 2011/12 must be made by April 5, 2016, or the opportunity will be lost.”

Ends (347 words)

For further information, please contact:

Jacqui Searle, Senior Tax Manager
EFG Independent Financial Advisers Limited, 33 Great Charles Street, Birmingham, B3 3JN.

0121 200 2255

www.efg-ifa.com

EFG Independent Financial Advisers offers a variety of solutions encompassing personal, family and business aspects, whether for wealth protection, family assets, wealth development, wealth preservation or retirement planning. The firm has six advisers in Wolverhampton, four in Birmingham and two in London, all of the highest calibre and free to act in their clients’ best interests.
EFG Independent Financial Advisers Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Prepared and issued by Andy Skinner of ASAP PR – 01789 490786, mobile 07990 978257.



February 16, 2016

Pensioners need an overspending early warning alert


Category: Financial News
Click for larger image
An early warning system is needed so the elderly can be alerted to the danger of overspending their pension pots.



That is the call from John Male, managing director of EFG Independent Financial Advisers, with offices in Birmingham, Wolverhampton and London.



He was backing a report from the London-based Social Market Foundation which has analysed potential outcomes from last year’s wide-ranging pension reforms.



Mr Male said: “The new flexibility means the onus is very much on pensioners to act responsibly.



“Early fears centred around some blowing all their money on fast cars and foreign holidays. But the greater danger is indulging in too high a lifestyle and then running out of cash in their late 70s. This is what has to be guarded against and some will need the authorities to step in and attempt to save them from their own inadequacies.”



The SMF report looked at similar systems operating in Australia and the United States to try and predict what might happen in the UK.



It found that very few people buy an annuity and those who draw down their pots consume their pensions at varying rates.



On average, Australians preserve their pension wealth by consuming only a small percentage each year, ensuring some is left for later in retirement, although at the cost of having relatively low incomes. But a minority consume their pension pots very quickly, with an estimated 25 per cent of individuals exhausting these by the age of 70 and 40 per cent by 75.



Evidence from the US also suggested that drawdown retirees empty their pension pots relatively fast.



As a consequence the Foundation identified three typical outcomes – the Cautious Australian whereby retirees eat into their pension wealth by less than one per cent a year, ensuring there is money left for later life, a Quick-spending Australian path in which retirees exhaust their pension pots entirely by 75, and a Typical American with retirees spending eight per cent of their initial pension pot each year.



The report noted: “UK retirees are at risk of pension pot exhaustion too. Copying the Typical American path or the path of the Quick-spending Australian would lead on average to pot exhaustion by retirement year 17 and year 10 respectively. This is far in advance of the average number of years that retirees can expect to live after retirement – 22 for men and 26 for women. In contrast, buying an annuity or following the Cautious Australian path ensures that the pension is not exhausted.”



As a result it argues the need for a two stream early warning system.



It urges the Government to monitor closely what retirees do with their pension savings and identify risks both to groups of individuals and to the state. “It would allow government to alter policy to reflect consumer behaviour and also to target support at specific at-risk groups.”



But it also recommends Personal Pension Alerts in order “to assess the risks to which retirees may be exposed at an individual level and so enable policymakers to intervene promptly where appropriate”.



It adds: “Potential interventions could include targeted support and advice for those with low financial capability, a mid-retirement financial health check to encourage older people to reconsider their financial position for their later years, and initiatives to make retirees think twice before they take big one-off decisions such as withdrawing all their pension savings.”



Mr Male said: “This is a sensible and well-argued approach which has much to commend it.



“Undoubtedly there will be pensioners who get into difficulties and the Government needs to address this or risk benefit costs rising.”



Ends (598 words)



For further information, please contact:



John Male, Managing Director,

EFG Independent Financial Advisers Limited, 33 Great Charles Street, Birmingham, B3 3JN.

0121 200 2255



www.efg-ifa.com



EFG Independent Financial Advisers offers a variety of solutions encompassing personal, family and business aspects, whether for wealth protection, family assets, wealth development, wealth preservation or retirement planning. The firm has six advisers in Wolverhampton, four in Birmingham and two in London, all of the highest calibre and free to act in their clients’ best interests.

EFG Independent Financial Advisers Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Prepared and issued by Andy Skinner of ASAP PR – 01789 490786, mobile 07990 978257.



December 10, 2015

Shock warning for UK expats over Spanish asset disclosure rules


Category: Financial News
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A leading financial adviser to UK expats in Spain has warned that they could face massive penalties for failing to disclose overseas assets on time.
According to El Economista, an unnamed Spanish taxpayer has been ordered to pay 442,000 euros in interest, fines and other costs. The case was the first time the maximum penalty of 150 per cent had been levied.
The authoritative Spanish economic website said this included a fine of 253,950 euros for failing to declare his assets on time, 169,300 euros to regularise his undeclared assets and 16,060 euros in interest.
Angela South, managing director of Magna Wealth Management Ltd which trades in the EU as Expat Pensions, said the decision had come as a “shock if not a surprise”.
“The rules came into effect on January 1, 2013, and mean that frrom March 31, 2013, expats who are tax-resident in Spain must report any overseas assets they hold worth more than 50,000 euros,” she said.
Assets over 50,000 euros will be taxed at 52 per cent, but if tax-resident expats fail to report these assets by March 31 each year, then they face a potential fine of 150 per cent of the 52 per cent they could have paid.
Since the introduction of the foreign assets declaration scheme, known in Spain as Modelo 720, the Spanish ministry of finance has reported that more than 126.3 billion euros in assets has been declared, mostly located in Switzerland and Luxembourg.
Mrs South said: “This may not be the end of the story as the taxpayer has appealed to the European Court of Justice over what is regarded as an ‘excessive’ penalty.”
The European Commission is understood to have already written to the Spanish government, questioning the policy, as it may contravene European law.
But Mrs South said the decision itself should not come as too much of a surprise.
“It can be seen as a shock if not a surprise, owing to the size of the fine, but taxpayers were warned about the new disclosure regime.
“Very few of our clients are tax-resident in Spain as we mainly deal with UK expats who have elected to live in Spain but may not pay their tax there.
“However, if you are not sure of your status, you should urgently seek professional advice from a tax specialist with knowledge of the Spanish system.
“The factors to be taken into account when considering whether someone is resident in Spain include spending more than 183 days in Spain in a calendar year, Spain must be the centre of their economic activity, and whether their spouse and dependent children live there – which is a factor regardless of how many days the individual spends in Spain.
“Clearly this is not a straightforward situation for some expats who are still working, or in some way economically active, and are paying tax in Spain,” she said.
Spanish taxpayers with offshore accounts and overseas assets over 50,000 euros will have to supply the name and address of the bank or other financial institution where they hold accounts, dates of opening, closing or changing those accounts, their account balances on December 31 each year, and the average account balance in all relevant accounts in the final quarter of each year.
Angela South visits clients and holds regular surgeries in areas such as the Costa Calida and Costa Blanca from Mojacar up the coastline to Moraira and visits areas such as Gibraltar, the Costa del Luz, Costa del Sol, Costa Brava, and other areas of mainland Spain and the Balearics by appointment.
Mrs South said: “By the very nature of the work we do, we work closely with other professionals with specialist expertise in all areas of Spanish finances and tax, so we are in a position to help expats structure their finances, savings and investments regardless of the jurisdiction they come under.”
For further information on your financial options if considering retiring or moving to Spain, email angela@expatpensions.info or call 0044 1789 490363.
Ends (666 words)
For further information, please contact:
Angela South, Managing Director,
Magna Wealth Management Ltd, 2 Croft Court, Croft Lane,
Temple Grafton, Warwickshire
01789 490363
Magna Wealth Management Limited trading as Expat Pensions is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority FCA number 600163. Registered in England and Wales. Registered Office Suite 2, Croft Court, Croft Lane, Temple Grafton, Warks. B49 6PW. Registered number 07136102
Magna Wealth Management Limited trading as Expat Pensions has the necessary passports to provide cross border advice within countries of the European Economic Area
Prepared and issued by Andy Skinner of ASAP PR, 01789 490786, mobile 07990 987257.


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