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Nearly a quarter of UK businesses report that late payments threaten their survival. The Federation of Small Businesses reports that the problem goes beyond just paying late. It encompasses practices like retrospective discounting and 'paying-to-stay', which sees smaller companies paying to be retained as suppliers without any promise of work.
If no explicit terms for payment are agreed, then legally, payment is assumed to be due after 30 days for the purpose of charging statutory interest. At present, a government-sponsored voluntary Prompt Payment Code exists, requiring signatories not only to pay within 60 days - in line with legal requirements - but also to work towards payment within 30 days. Some large businesses now have to report on their payment terms and practices, to allow other businesses to check their payment track record before taking on work. The government also encourages recourse to the Small Business Commissioner, whose office helped small businesses recover over £2 million in unpaid invoices last year. It will now also have input into the Prompt Payment Code.
The government is looking into new ways to require large firms to pay supply chains promptly. Ensuring company boards have responsible payment practices in place throughout their supply chain is one area under consideration. So, too, is helping small businesses pro-actively manage the payments process, using state-of-the-art accounting software. This is an area in which we would be happy to advise.
Why not contact Wilkes Tranter & Co Limited today for more information or a FREE no obligation quote.
The existing job support scheme, the furlough scheme, comes to an end on 31 October.
As part of the Winter Economy Plan the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will be extended under the name SEISS Grant Extension.
As always, the wellbeing of our staff and clients remains our priority and is at the forefront of our mind when considering our response to the current coronavirus situation. At present our office remains open during normal working hours however we are discouraging face to face contact and are moving to telephone/ e-mail communication wherever possible in an effort to protect ourselves and our clients.
In the absence of face to face meetings, you can contact us as follows:
Please be assured that we will be continuing to offer the best service and advice during this difficult period.
We will continue to closely monitor government advice on the situation and act accordingly.