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Sworn Oath, Affidavit or Declaration? Which is it?

LET’S just clarify... an Affidavit is a statement made under Oath. We can therefore rule out one area of confusion. The first two terms above are precisely the same. And now the government has modernised part of the probate procedure by abolishing the need for any statement by executors to be sworn. Since the beginning of this year it has been sufficient if the statement to be filed at the Probate Office is declared, by its maker’s signature, to be true. So what is the difference? Is that enough? Originally

Oaths had SERVICES


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highly sacred significance, reinforced by the use of a sacred text and form of words, but these requirements have been progressively diluted of the years, as the threat of being burned in eternal damnation doesn’t

seem to have the

impact that it once did. And yet, perhaps strangely, the term “Oath” still persists. In all but the smallest probate matters, until last year an Oath would have been performed to verify the accuracy of the statistical components of a deceased’s estate. This would have been conducted in a brief ceremony before

a Commissioner for

Oaths, or a solicitor, in which the truth of a document was recognised by its author, by his holding a Testament and swearing “by almighty God”. As an alternative it has, for a great

many years, been

possible to offer almost any sincere confirmation that the document is true. This all

works because,

either way, the compulsion to state the truth is backed not just by sanctions imposed through religion, but by the law of perjury, which in this modern

ORIE NTE ERING competition. 18th


On Monday two teams

- Tree Maintenance - Tree Removal - Stump Grinding - Garden Maintenance - Hedge & Lawn Cutting - Turfing - Fencing

- Soft Landscaping

went to Hartismere for the Orienteering competition. Our two teams worked really well together through the practice runs and saw their strengths and weaknesses and realised they needed to work around these. Both teams were very quick in the final task and completed with time to spare. Feeling rather hopeful that we had done well we went off to join the quiz whilst the results were being calculated. Out of 23 teams that competed that day, Charsfield was crowned bronze and gold medallist. The children are looking forward to going to the finals at the end of May.

world possibly has a greater immediate impact. In legal


generally, facts that rely upon an individual's memory or knowledge are most reliably and ideally proven by having the person give testimony in court: he would appear in person before a judge, at a time and place known to other interested persons, and must swear that his testimony will be true, must state


testimony so that all can hear it, and then be cross-examined by opposing parties. Generally, the

written testimony is record of his taken down in

written form by an official of the court, the court reporter. This procedure has developed over centuries to maximize fairness and the likelihood of obtaining the truth, but is expensive,

troublesome, time-consuming. and Therefore,

in many instances, especially in preliminary or uncontested proceedings, a court will allow testimonial

evidence to be

given in a document filed with the clerk of court. The pursuit of the truth then still relies on the integrity of the participants. The declarant must be present before a qualified person and must clearly state his intention, that all persons will be entitled to recognise that the content of his signed, relevant, document is not false. For more advice

about executing and witnessing

different types of documents contact

IP17 1AG

Telephone (01728) 602084 or e-mail

Charsfield Primary School Flapjacks

John Pulham at:-

Messrs Pulham & Co Egmere House, Market Place, Saxmundham,

Financial Focus On….. Remuneration planning for couples in business

income). The practical upshot of the way in which this couple arranged their affairs was to divert income from the husband to the wife, who paid tax at a lower rate than the husband. HMRC will argue – in a court of law if necessary - that this constitutes


arrangement to avoid tax as it was a structure that you would not have entered into with an arm’s-length third party. This legislation is not new, however.

In fact, John Mills,

HMRC have always been called sore losers by some and when they lost the case of “Arctic Systems Ltd” in the House of Lords in 2007, the following day they simply changed the rules.

HMRC have long been

fighting against what they see as disguised remuneration and the Arctic Systems case, and HMRC’s subsequent did

sulk, set out the benchmark

and some clearly defined pitfalls of husband and wife remuneration planning. Whilst HMRC’s current attention may be publicly focused on so- called payroll “loan schemes” (whereby part of a director/ employee’s salary is paid in the form of a loan from the company which is later written off), the

“Settlement rules”

remain a far simpler and much more potent weapon in the Inspector’s armory. Settlement

legislation for ror Cyclone

Disaster Maria/Francis. A huge well done to Francis and Maria who decided to bake and sell flapjacks to pupils and parents in the playground in order to raise some money for the Cyclone Idai Disaster Appeal in March.

They managed to raise: £72

here at school, £90 at Mum and Dad’s workplace, £38 was donated by someone in their village making their total £200. This was match funded by the government to £400. What an amazing, simple

idea to raise money to help people less fortunate than ourselves. Well done to Bradshaw family!


remuneration planning can best be illustrated with this example (set out in purely financial terms). Let us say the main earner in a family is the husband who has his own business. His spouse does nothing directly to assist in the business but was gifted 80% of the shares in the company on which dividends are paid. Ignoring payroll and corporation tax liabilities, the company

earns £80,000 per

year and the husband draws a £40,000 salary. The remaining £40,000 is paid in dividends (of which £32,000 goes to his wife who has no other taxable

the actor (father of Hayley Mills), fell foul of it in 1974 when he paid his daughter’s earnings into a Trust where the money was accumulated rather than being paid out. The crux of the matter is whether or not a benefit is conveyed to another person (or body) by way of a settlement.

In plain English,

if the person who receives the income is not the person who originally earned it, a benefit has occurred.

a tax differential

If there is then (because

for example the spouse has a lower tax rate than the earner) this attracts the attention of HMRC. In

the the above example, wife’s shares conveyed

a benefit of income. The “benefit” will then be re- assessed on the husband at a higher rate of tax.


you should contrast this with the situation where a husband runs a business via a Company where the wife had invested money to help get the business off the ground. In this case, the dividends she receives can be deemed to be a return on an investment and simply taxable on her.

HMRC will seek to apply

the Settlement legislation for both Ordinary Shares and Preference shares (the latter being

arguably a

income” anyway). The settlement

“right to legislation

can even be applied where partnerships are concerned, again where profits are diverted to a spouse who has lower rates of tax and who

does not actively participate in the business. However, the above legislation is rendered impotent with genuine gifts which are not wholly or substantially a right to income. For example, a gift between spouses of shares quoted on the stock exchange to make best use of the lower rates of tax is not caught. Where there is no control over the level of dividends to be paid, in ordinary tax planning cases such as these, the settlement rules will not apply. Although the

situation is

caught by different legislation, it should be remembered that remuneration paid by a sole trader to a spouse employed under PAYE is usually given close scrutiny by the Revenue, to ensure that wages paid are at a level consistent with the duties performed for the business.


It is clear that subtle in


or personal circumstances can have huge effects when considering this legislation. As such it is important to take professional advice when considering husband and wife remuneration

and dividend

arrangements. In this way, you can ensure that the fallout from the Arctic Systems case doesn’t give you a chill whether you are in partnership, sole trader or company.

For further information on any of the above points or to discuss your tax affairs generally, please do not hesitate

to contact Robin

Beadle at Ensors Chartered Accountants, Saxmundham on 01728-603005.

This article seeks to address general business and financial issues and due care has been taken in its preparation. Ensors cannot accept responsibility for loss incurred by any person, company or entity as a result of acting, or failing to act, on any material in this publication. Specialist advice should always be sought in relation to your particular circumstances.

News from Framlingham and Saxmundham Cats Protection

OUR first fundraising event of the year at Pets at Home, Martlesham was a success and it was lovely to meet many people who had adopted cats from us in the past, some cats now having reached a ripe old age and still doing well! In various ways, kind people expressed their support for the work we do for the cats and kittens in our care, and many also

became more aware GATES & FENCING Quality you can count on.

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01728 833118 07896 766719 MAY 2019 Prometheus Orchestra

A YEAR after the sell-out 10th anniversary celebration concert, PO returns to Orford playing some much-loved music. The concert

will main be

performed the night before, too in Felixstowe as part of Music in Felixstowe. The


is Mendelssohn’s exuberant

Symphony bursting

Italian with

sunshine, warmth and colour, heralding the summer to come. Before the interval one

famous piece, the monumental Vaughan-Williams Tallis

Thomas Fantasia and the

lesser known and beautiful Damase Flute Concerto. Saturday 4th May, 7pm, St

John’s Church, Felixstowe (£15/£8 on


548010 or 01394 670633) Sunday May 5th at 4pm, St Bartholomew’s Orford (£15/£8 on 01728 687110 or at www.

of our never-ending work with ferals, our neutering campaigns and how we help with cat welfare. Date for your diary: Please come along to see and support us at the RSPCA Fun-Day at Mill Lane, Martlesham on Sunday 26th May. Cat Advice: Holidays and your cat: Home or away? Booking your holiday is exciting, but

don't your forget

about your cat! Whilst you're enjoying


break, it is important that your cat is safe and content whist you are away. Cat sitters: All cats differ, but those who enjoy their home comforts or who have a nervous disposition are likely to prefer staying where they feel secure - at home. In these circumstances, a reliable home sitter is probably the best option for your feline friend. If you are lucky enough to have trusted family, friends or neighbours

who are happy to care for your feline friend, your cat can continue to enjoy their home surroundings. Alternatively, pet sitting services can be booked to take care of your cat while you are away. For recommendations, try asking other cat-lovers in the area for the pet-sitting businesses they trust.

Choosing a cattery: For cats who are comfortable with being away from home and in the company of strangers, catteries are a great alternative - but be sure to choose carefully. Always check that the cattery is licensed with the local authority and ask

to see the licence. In

preparation, ensure that your cat's vaccinations are up to date and that you book well in advance.

Cats Protection recommends that you inspect a cattery before you make a decision. There should be double doors or a 'safety corridor' to prevent escape artists from disappearing. Cats should be kept separately and shouldn't have direct contact with other cats; there should be space between the pens so cats can't go nose- to-nose with each other. Do pens have some form of heating, are they insulated and easily cleanable? Food and water bowls and litter trays should be clean and tidy.

Importantly, you should be asked to show evidence that your cat's vaccinations are up-to-date. Lastly, make sure that the cattery is comfortable to administer any ongoing medication or special food your cat may need.

It may also be a good idea to ask about bringing familiar food, cat litter and a comforting item that smells of home with your cat. It can greatly help your cat settle in to their temporary environment. Getting your cat used to these 'holidays' from an early age, is advisable and reduces possible stress. Looking for a home: Tiny a

is gentle giant of about

seven years old. He was made homeless after a domestic crises and is now looking for a new start in life. Tiny is large in heart and body and is affectionate and friendly. Could you give him his new settled home?

See our website: or telephone 01728 723499 for more information about adopting cats in our care; event dates; neutering; cat- care leaflets; how to become a volunteer fundraiser or fosterer and other ways you can support us. Also find us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.









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