BDO Equity Reporter
All companies with any type of employee share plan or arrangement are required to register their plans and submit returns online. This obligation is not exclusive to formal share plans and the need to file a return is likely to arise for any employee or director share transaction.
Returns must be filed by 6 July each year and are difficult to complete, both in terms of collating all the data required and reporting the data in the correct format to meet HMRC requirements.
There are a number of different returns that may need to be completed, depending on the types of employee share plan that a company operates. The ‘Other’ return is the most commonly required return, to report any share transactions and plans that are not tax advantaged.
HMRC issued just under 10,000 penalties for late returns in relation to the 2017/18 tax year. The Penalties are up to £700 and daily penalties can also be applied where returns are submitted more than 9 months after the deadline.
BDO Equity Reporter
BDO Equity Reporter is a proprietary diagnostic tool that ensures your annual share plan returns are accurately completed and submitted on time.
The software’s sophisticated analysis feature can interrogate the data to:
- Review and verify exchange rates provided against accepted daily rates
- Identify unusually high (or low) tax withholding rates
- Verify market values used against stock market data
- Assist with calculations for International Mobile Employees (IMEs)
- Highlight any errors, ie duplicate employee records
- Detect gaps and missing fields.
Once the data has been cleansed it will be automatically mapped into the relevant sections of the annual return in a compliant format.
How does it help your business?
The benefits of this tool will be felt most by those operating share incentives for hundreds of employees or where there are multiple transactions for each employee.
- PROVIDES - a clear overview of the compliance process
- TRACKS PROGRESS - of activities assigned to team members across the globe
- STORES - all historic returns previously submitted
- GENERATES – automatic reminders for key deadlines
- KEEPS - a record of all correspondence and our communications with you
- RETAINS - an audit trail of information, process and source of information for each submission
- ALLOWS - tiered access to colleagues and third party suppliers
- IMPROVES - transparency and monitoring of team members progress
- DELIVERS - real time updates of progress giving you complete visibility
- ENSURES - that the company’s key filing obligations are met.
We used the BDO Equity Reporter for the 2016/17 share plan annual return. We usually complete the task in-house, but once we had seen BDO’s automated tool we decided to use it in order to reduce the substantial amount of work that we historically need to perform and to reduce risk of human error due to the large quantity of data that we need to report to HMRC each year. Our IT department was comfortable with the transfer of our share plan data to BDO’s portal from a security perspective and the whole process from start to finish was much easier than we had anticipated. The BDO Equity Reporter is a real “value add” and is something that we will be using in future years.
Head of Employment Tax, Siemens