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Accountancy & Tax in Lancashire

Key start-up information and list of local accountants

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Lancashire Accountants

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Having a good firm of accountants on your side will ensure that you have all the information and support that you need to help your business grow and flourish.

They can offer advice and help you comply with accounting and tax requirements.

If you are self employed or run a small enterprise in Lancashire, it makes sense to use an Accountant or Bookkeeper who is keen to help small business and new business start ups rather than struggle with the task yourself.

Recommended Local Partner

Carter Collins & Myer

Carter Collins & Myer

Our stress free approach to handling your affairs - and no surprise fee packages - will help you budget effectively and use our services without hesitation.

Each business has different needs we like to tailor our services to suit your requirements. We offer:

* VAT Returns * Bookkeeping * Payroll * CIS Returns * Accountancy Services * Raising money

Our clients tell us that we give great advice with no surprises and we love working with new businesses to get you from where you are, to where you want to be.

Call or email today

Mobile icon 01706 860 255

Local partners

We are happy to promote anyone who is prepared to offer friendly support to local start-ups.

Our local partners have been kind enough to help us and are keen to help you too.

Main Accounting Considerations

Sole Trader or Limited Company

One of the first decisions you will need to make is which legal structure is likely to suit your new business and this will affect your accountancy obligations.

You can read a detailed article about your various options at: Sole Trader or Limited Company?

The information below primarily relates to self-employment but if you decide to trade as a limited company, you can read more here: Running a Limited Company.

Becoming Self-Employed

You should tell HMRC as soon as you start self-employment, otherwise you may face a penalty. You are considered to have started self-employment when you have something to sell and either have a customer for your goods or services, or you are actively marketing your business.

You can let HMRC know about your self-employment by registering online for business taxes. A Self-Assessment Online account will automatically be set up at the same time. This allows you to send your Self-Assessment tax returns online. You will receive an Activation Code. You need to activate the service within 28 days. If you don’t, you will have to ask for a new Activation Code.

You can register online at

National Insurance

As a self-employed person, you pay a fixed amount of Class 2 National Insurance contributions (NIC). If your profits are above a certain limit, you may also have to pay Class 4 National Insurance contributions.

See Self-employed National Insurance rates for full details.

Statutory Records

It is very important that you set up a record keeping system and keep all records and supporting documents. Records for the current tax year must be retained until 31 January 2022.

You must keep records of all money coming into and going out of your business. This includes all cash, cheques and credit card transactions.

Your records should be adequate to allow you to complete an accurate Self Assessment return. You will be expected to keep a full record of:

  • All sales made and other business income, as it is earned.
  • The cost of all business expenses and purchases as you pay them, no matter how little they cost.
  • All purchases of business stock, goods and raw materials.
  • Mileage records.
  • Capital expenditure; keep a separate record of all purchases and sales of business equipment, machinery and vehicles, together with the receipts.
  • Keep a record of the market value of equipment or vehicles introduced into the business that you owned before starting your business.

See Business records if you're self-employed for full details.

Key Dates

There are key dates that you need to be aware of during the financial year. These relate to reporting and payment of any monies due. A list of dates and full explanation can be found here.

Value Added Tax (VAT)

You must register for VAT if:

  • Your taxable turnover exceeds the VAT threshold in any 12 month period
  • you expect your taxable turnover to exceed the VAT threshold within the next 30 days
  • you take over an existing VAT registered business as a going concern

You have 30 days from the date you meet any of these criteria to register.

Usually, VAT registration can be completed online and if you apply online, you will be enrolled automatically so that you can submit your VAT return online (there is no longer a paper version).

The current VAT threshold is £85,000; if your turnover is below the registration limit, you can choose whether to apply for voluntary registration. The standard rate of VAT currently is 20%.

See the official VAT website for full up to date details.

Lancashire Accountants

Kirkwood Wilson Ltd
At Kirkwood Wilson, we take a completely different approach to most accountancy firms and can do so much more for your business than just produce your year-end accounts. We fully appreciate the importance of improving your company profits and minimising your tax bills and we can add real value to your business - where it really matters! Our processes and services are unique within our industry and are guaranteed to improve your business efficiency and profitability.
Ainsworth Accountants
As a Preston-based Accountants, we offer a wide range of advice for business start-ups. We are also members of the Shout Network and are able to introduce you to many other Preston professionals and trades people. We hope to build a strong relationship with you so that you will feel able to call us when you need clear, concise and helpful advice as you develop your business. We will treat you with confidentiality, respect and sensitivity at all time
HH Accountants
We are new to the area and have recently joined up with an existing local practice. We have a wealth of experience in advising business start ups and can offer a full range of services. We advise on the best method of operating: sole trader, partnership or Limited Company. We advise on VAT registration. Our initial consultation is always free.
Kilners Accountancy
Friendly, affordable and reliable accountancy services. Let us take away the hassle of your bookkeeping requirements allowing you more time to focus on the running and progression of your business. We offer bookkeeping, payroll, credit control, cashflow, VAT processing and financial reporting and are always happy to assist with any officepaperwork related tasks to free you up.
Accountancy Management Services
Accountancy services practice specialising in SMEs and micro businesses, established 30 years. offices in Blackpool, Blackburn and Manchester. 30 staff to support you in your business free use of boardroom facilities, full telephone ongoing support (FOC) VAT, PAYE, sole trader partnership Ltd Co accounts, tax returns etc
Ainsworth Accountants
We offer a friendly and approachable accountancy and tax service. Our accounting service will be personalised and tailor made for your budget. If you wish we will help you do what you can do for yourself to reduce our involvement and keep costs down. We hope to build a strong relationship with you so that you will feel able to call us when you need clear, concise and helpful advice as you develop your business. We will treat you with confidentiality, respect and sensitivity at all time
Blackburn and Blackburn Limited
We are a general accountancy practice so work with a wide variety of small business owners. Within our practice are experienced and well qualified staff from professional backgrounds. All work is carried out in house - we dont sub-contract work abroad. We aim to establish and maintain close working relationships with our clients and make positive and practical suggestions to help your business.
Hanley and Co Ltd
Practical, jargon-free advice from our Partner Dean Logan FCA and his Team, based on 30 years experience as Practising Chartered Accountants and Business Advisors. Serving clients in Ashton under lyne and Blackpool and across Lancashire and the UK. Small business accountants and tax advisors covering all business areas. We offer detailed advice on all available Cloud Accounting systems (for HMRCs looming MTD requirements) and also specialist advice for Online Traders.
Higsons Chartered Accountants
For a personal, professional and local service
Holden Associates
Holden Associates are a family run firm of professionally qualified accountants, business and taxation consultants based in Lancashire and within easy reach of Liverpool, Preston, Southport, Manchester and the surrounding areas. Holden Associates provide a comprehensive range of tailor made services to all their clients, so whether you are a start-up, early years or established business at Holden Associates we will always treat you as an individual and not a number.
Holly Bank Accountants & Business Advisors
We are a pro-active firm of accountants, specialising in small and medium enterprises, offering a range of services including statutory accounts, company secretarial services, personal & corporate taxation, payroll, bookkeeping and VAT.
South Ribble Economic Partnership
In order to save businesses time and money, South Ribble Borough Council offers a dedicated service, free of charge. The Economic Development Team will act as a single point of contact, offering a range of beneficial information.

Local help for startups

There is plenty of help for startups in Lancashire but where can it be found?

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