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FINANCE IN FOCUS


Chancellors unwelcome summer surprise for investors


THE CHANCELLOR’S SUMMER BUDGET CONFIRMED MANY OF THE PROMISES RAISED IN THE AUTUMN STATEMENT BUT ONE SURPRISE ANNOUNCEMENT WILL HAVE A DETRIMENTAL EFFECT ON QUITE A LOT OF PEOPLE AND HAS TAKEN THE BAD LOOK AWAY FROM OUR DISAPPOINTING SUMMER.


The surprise announcement I am referring to are the changes to the taxation of dividends. Dividends are currently taxed at the effective rate of 0% for basic rate taxpayers, 25% for higher rate payers and 30.6% for those who earn more than £150,000.


From 6th April 2016 the first £5,000 of dividends, regardless of your other income, will be taxed at 0%, the remainder within the basic rate band will be taxed at 7.5%, higher rate tax payers will suffer 32.5% tax and those who earn more than £150,000 (Additional rate taxpayers) will be taxed at 38.1%.


Dividends are distributions made by companies to their shareholders from their after tax profits, i.e. dividends have already suffered corporation tax prior to their distribution to shareholders.


There are many who believe that the current (Pre Budget) system fairly reflects the fact that dividends have already been taxed and that basic rate taxpayers shouldn’t be effectively taxed twice, which now appears to be the case.


The changes will benefit all those higher rate and additional rate taxpayers who have dividend income of less than £5,000 per annum, everybody who earns more than £5,000 will suffer higher tax on that part.


The following example highlights some impacts the changes will have on two very different types of individuals; a pensioner who receives


£15,000 of dividend income per annum above their personal allowance will now suffer £750 of tax (previously zero) whereas an individual who earns £200,000 per year with £15,000 of dividend income will be £778 better off as a result of the changes.


Married couples regardless of their tax band could reallocate their shareholdings so as to maximise the £10,000 exempt dividend income threshold, this could minimise the impact of the tax hike, however professional advice should be sought before any action is taken.


There had been a steady flow of businesses becoming limited companies over the last decade; limited companies are more tightly regulated than unincorporated businesses which acts in the government’s favour so they had actively encouraged this transition through various tax breaks.


For many owner managed companies a significant part of the owner’s income was taken as dividends, they will now suffer more tax via this route.


For the majority of those businesses who incorporated the advantages of being a company will remain in place regardless of the extra tax on dividends but for some it may not.


If any of the points noted above affect you or somebody you know please speak to Robert Barr for independent professional advice. 


For independent, professional advice, contact Robbie Barr on 028 9032 5050 or email Robbie@muldoonaccountants.co.uk Muldoon & Co Chartered Accountants, 16 Mount Charles, Belfast BT7 1NZ.


GPhC on patient data ‘Strategic Partnership’


COMMENTING ON CONCERNS EXPRESSED ABOUT PHARMACIST ACCESS TO PATIENTS’ DATA AS PART OF THE NATIONAL ROLL OUT OF THE SUMMARY CARE RECORD, DUNCAN RUDKIN, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF THE GENERAL PHARMACEUTICAL COUNCIL, HAS SAID STANDARDS ARE KEY.


“As the pharmacy regulator, we can assure patients that pharmacy professionals and all community pharmacies (including those located in supermarkets) have to meet our standards when accessing patient records,” he said.


“These standards make clear the responsibilities of pharmacy professionals and pharmacy owners in relation to holding patients’ information securely and respecting their privacy. Anybody who obtains, records or holds data is also bound to comply with the Data Protection Act.


The Information Commissioner’s Office is the independent regulator responsible for upholding information rights under the Data Protection Act and for dealing with concerns relating to how personal data is accessed.


“We make clear to pharmacies and pharmacy professionals that they must comply with all requirements regarding how patients' personal information is used.”


The General Pharmaceutical Council has launched a debate on how the education and training of the pharmacy team needs to change to address future challenges. We want to hear from pharmacy professionals, patients, employers, students and tutors about what they think.


Please visit http://www.pharmacyregulation.org/e ducationstandards to share your views.


SAINSBURY’S HAS STRUCK A DEAL TO SELL ITS PHARMACY BUSINESS TO CELESIO’S LLOYDSPHARMACY IN AN ACQUISITION WORTH £125M.


The duo announced a “strategic partnership” which will also see Sainsbury’s receiving commercial annual rent payments from LloydsPharmacy for each location.


Sainsbury’s and LloydsPharmacy customers will benefit from an enhanced pharmacy service delivered from Sainsbury’s stores with all the benefits of accessible parking, flexible opening hours and convenient locations.


There is presently one Sainsbury Pharmacy’s in Northern Ireland.


Cormac Tobin, Managing Director of LloydsPharmacy and Celesio UK, said the deal was a ‘fantastic fit’ for LloydsPharmacy.


“We are both passionate about excellent customer service and making a positive impact on the communities we serve. Health is our focus and over recent years we have developed a range of services to make it easier for people to manage their health, such as our pain management and skin health services, and we look forward to making these even more accessible via the Sainsbury’s network,” he said.


Under the terms of the transaction, LloydsPharmacy has agreed to acquire 281 pharmacies in total, including 277 in-store pharmacies and four located in hospitals, all of which will be rebranded as LloydsPharmacy.


The deal is expected to complete by the end of February next year, subject to regulatory conditions being satisfied.


Class 4 Medicines defect information – Caution in use


Batch number 018111


The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has been advised by Teva UK Limited that there is a printing error on some of the foil blisters of the above batch of pregabalin capsules 75mg.


38 pharmacyinfocus.co.uk Expiry date December 2017


The strength is printed in various positions on the foil; however, approximately one in three blisters has 25mg printed in one position of the foil instead of 75mg. The affected batch is not being recalled to allow


Pack size 1 x 56


continued supply of the medicine; however, no further distribution of the affected batch will take place. For general enquiries, contact the Teva UK Customer Service Team by telephone on 0800 590 502.


First distributed 15 July 2015


For medical information enquires, contact Teva UK Limited by telephone on 02075 407 117 or via email to medinfo@tevauk.com. Further information can be found on the MHRA section of the Gov.uk website.


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