articles: Insurance

Making Tax Digital: how and when to get your accounting systems in shape

HMRC’s MTD initiative has some strict requirements for businesses with turnover above the VAT-registration threshold. As highlighted in previous blogs, affected businesses will need to keep their VAT records digitally. They’ll also need to file their VAT returns to HMRC using ‘functional compatible software’ – software or spreadsheets that can connect to HMRC via an application programming interface (API).

Is your VAT group still valid?

The recent Barclays Bank tax demand of £184m in backdated VAT should serve as a powerful reminder of the importance of compliance with VAT group requirements for financial services companies. The case indicates HMRC’s current interest in both VAT groups and partially-exempt entities.

Making Tax Digital: are you ready for April 2019?

The taxman is embracing digital technology – and that means businesses need to as well. HMRC’s Making Tax Digital (MTD) initiative goes live from 1 April 2019 – so the clock’s ticking. It’s time to make sure you can meet the new requirements for digital record keeping and understand the new mechanism for submitting VAT returns to HMRC.

What areas of insurance will be most affected by IFRS 17?

IFRS 17 will bring significant change in reporting for insurers, bringing both benefits such as better insights into business performance and challenges such as faster, more efficient and better controlled processes. Its broad scope means it will not just impact insurers’ finance departments, but will also affect other functions such as actuarial, IT and data systems.

Tackling poor value products in the general insurance sector

The FCA is taking action to incentivise firms to improve the value of general insurance (GI) products being sold to consumers and has introduced a value measures pilot scorecard to provide greater transparency around product value comparison. However, developing a meaningful way of measuring the value of GI products is far from straightforward.
Here we examine the steps that the regulator has been taking in an effort to find a remedy and put forward our thoughts on how firms might tackle this metric within their own organisations.

The Budget 2016 – video summary

A sugar-coated Budget for the next generation

In the uncertain global economic environment, the Chancellor’s deficit-reduction goals have become more challenging. But he still managed to strike an up-beat tone when delivering “a Budget that puts the next generation first”.

Delegated authority: increased regulatory focus on third party relationships

With competition so high, many insurers continue to evolve their outsourcing models to aid their supply chain and improve their competitive edge. Yet as the complexity of the supply chain increases, the lines between specific roles and responsibilities are becoming more and more blurred.

This confusion has led to criticism of the sector, culminating in an FCA thematic review on delegated authority arrangements in the general insurance market. The review focused on concerns over firms’ oversight of outsourced arrangements and the potential impacts any shortcomings might have on the delivery of products and related services to customers.

An Autumn Statement for “rebuilding Britain”

Five years since delivering his first spending review, George Osborne spent over an hour delivering his 2015 Autumn Statement. He repeatedly stated the Government’s intent to build public services, infrastructure, national defences and strong public finances.

The Autumn Statement – what can we expect?

The Chancellor of the Exchequer will deliver his Autumn Statement on Wednesday 3 December. This will provide an update on the government’s plans for the economy based on the latest forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility, which will be published the same day.

The Budget 2014 – summary

In a speech full of sound bites, the Chancellor’s 2014 Budget repeated past themes – the need to build a resilient economy and for Britain to live within its means. But his dominant message was new: this was a Budget for “the makers, the doers and the savers”.

Data quality in the insurance industry

Having good data quality is critical for the insurance industry. This is, of course, not a new challenge – Solvency II reviews, FSA/Lloyd’s data audits, data validation reports and ORSA work-streams are just some of the challenges that insurers have needed to grapple with over the past few years.

Financial Crime Procedures: A reminder

“Bribery and corruption from overseas payments is an issue we expect all firms to do everything they can to tackle. Firms cannot be complacent about their controls – when we take enforcement action we expect the industry to sit up and take notice."
Tracey McDermott, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).