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April changes for Corporation Tax

From April 2011, all Corporation Tax (CT) payments will have to be made electronically, and all company tax returns must be filed online for accounting periods ending after 31 March 2010. The returns will also have to be filed using a specified data format, known as Inline XBRL* or iXBRL**.

As well as limited companies, the changes will affect other organisations that pay corporation tax, including clubs, societies, associations, co-operatives, charities and other unincorporated bodies.

There are a number of options for electronic payment, including: Direct Debit; debit or credit card via the BillPay service; your own bank or building society’s internet or telephone banking service; a BACS or CHAPS transfer; by Bank Giro or at participating Post Offices.

Companies will be able to file online either through commercially available software or by using HMRC’s own CT filing software, which is aimed at companies with less complex tax affairs.

To sign up for Corporation Tax online filing visit www.hmrc.gov.uk/ct and then click ‘Register for Corporation Tax Online’.

* XBRL (short for eXtensible Business Reporting Language) is a computer-readable format for financial data. It works by putting a tag on each piece of electronic data (text or numbers) within a document. Inline XBRL makes XBRL readable by people as well as machines. It guarantees that the layout and presentation of information looks the same for both the author and the person receiving it, whether it is being viewed online or as a printout.

**  Companies with relatively straightforward financial affairs, or their agents, can send their accounts in iXBRL format to HMRC as part of their Company Tax Return, and also send these accounts, or an abbreviated version, to Companies House. For more information, visit HMRC.

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