In-line with deadlines

iXBRL. When I mention that word in the office the team quickly back away from me.

I am excited by the changes. It is an easier way to compare information and use the data. iXBRL (In-line eXtensible Business Reporting Language) is essentially a form of tagging data which will make it easier to compare financial information between companies.

HMRC mandated from 1 April 2011 all corporation tax will need to be filed in iXBRL and online, with Companies House adapting its systems to allow the same format to be filed with them.

However like any new technology, understanding how useful, complicated and annoying it can be as well as how many risks are involved it will take time.

With just 11 months before the deadline many software houses are yet to be compliant with HMRC requirements.

Recent statics from Deloitte’s tax professionals show 93% of businesses have done either little or no planning for the new filing requirements.

Over the coming weeks and months I am assured the software houses will be compliant, but what about a dummy run or playing with the software to understand its capabilities? As a company or their accountant getting your dates wrong or filing information late is a very costly mistake.

The burden of responsibility it seems will fall on the accountant. According to the same Deloitte research, in the US, 75% of companies outsourced filing requirements for a year in order to delay purchase of software – as well as allowing the market to mature when they switched to XBRL filing.

It seems accountants not businesses will need to research changes very seriously. If the accountant can’t file the accountants and don’t understand the changes or have the software, where are the businesses to go?

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