With the announcement that HM Revenue and Customs is now hot on the heels of dental practitioners’ tax affairs, it is high time that all practice principals put their business records in order.
The following points set out some of HMRC’s basic record keeping guidelines for dentists.
• Don’t throw away business records – keep business records for at least five years and ten months after the end of the tax year the records relate to. Failure to do so could result in a fine of up to £3,000.
• Keep business and home life separate – business records and personal records are kept separate, with the help of a separate business bank account.
• Sorry, sir. The dog ate it… – if your business records are lost or destroyed, unfortunately they will have to be recreated.
Practitioners looking to stay in HMRC’s good books should enlist the help of a specialist accountant for dentists who is well versed in the preparation of tax returns and submitting them to the Inland Revenue.
Accountants such as these are members of the Association of Specialist Providers to Dentists, a group of service providers whose services are endorsed by dental professionals.