Accountancy firms are not geared up to tackle the switchover to the new
online filing system to be brought in by HMRC next year.
A survey conducted by CCH, the accountancy technology business, found
accountants are still undecided on how they will convert data into the new
format to file corporation tax returns.
HMRC mandated from 1 April 2011 all corporation tax filing must be in a new
computer tagging language known as iXBRL (in-line eXtensible Business Reporting
Language), which is hoped to make comparing financial information easier.
Less than one in ten (8%) of accountants surveyed have decided how they will
convert accounts to iXBRL format before filing at HMRC.
David Routley, technical product manager, CCH, said: “What the CCH research
has shown is that accountants are still not geared up for the move to compulsory
e-filing next year.
“Two critical areas, converting data into iXBRL format which can be time
consuming, and a lack of clear formalised relationship agreements, will mean
that they could be faced with unplanned additional costs and a resource drain
More than 30% of accountants submit corporation tax returns for clients from
information produced by third parties. However, 52% of third party information
is currently submitted in paper format and 48% in pdf, the least iXBRL friendly
Routley added: “Accountants will need to spell out to clients and third parties
who will be responsible for ensuring the tagging of data, otherwise they will be
left with a much larger volume of work than they expected.”
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