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Accountants in Practice

Matters to Report to NCA : Retentions and NMW



Retention of overpayments

It is quite common for credit balances to arise on a client’s trade debtor ledger and this often represents an overpayment from their customer. It may be the customer paid the wrong amount, processed an invoice twice or paid an amount which was subsequently cleared by a credit note.

In the case of credit balances arising where there is nothing to suggest dishonest behaviour no report will be required. For example where the client attempted to return the overpayments to its customers (or at least has made the position clear by sending out monthly statements showing the true position), or if the overpayments were mistakenly overlooked it would seem likely that your client is not acting dishonestly.

However, if there is evidence that the client takes action to hide the overpayment, perhaps by transferring these to a different account, suppressing normal monthly statements or transferring such amounts immediately to profit consideration should be given as to whether theft of these funds have occurred and if so a report is necessary.

Payment of the National Minimum Wage

Employers not paying staff the appropriate National Minimum Wage are committing a criminal offence. The proceeds of this crime are the wages which should be, but are not paid to staff. The government has recently made is easier for employees to complain about under-payment and has taken to publishing the names of employers who have underpaid staff. The most recent lists over seventy employers, mostly small local businesses, including care providers, hotels, a Papa Johns pizza franchise, and even a church. If such non-compliance is identified by you, you must make a report.

Published May 2015