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Legal limited company accounting practices



I hesitate to ask this as I slightly fear a wave of ‘ask your accountant’ replies. Anyway, here goes!

Does anybody know of a web resource which gives the essentials of legal operating practices for company finances. It occurs to me that many company owners and book-keepers need some guidance on how they stay within legal operating practices (to the extent that they exist). Many of us are only in contact with accountant once a year or so, but might be unknowingly breaking other rules along the way.

The rules on legal vs illegal dividends are very well publicised, but there are other questions that are less often discussed - like whether you can spend money which would temporarily render you unable to satisfy a known VAT or corporation tax liability due to be paid at a later date.

Anyway, it would be good to track down some advice on this sort of thing. I have tried a few web searches an seem to be getting nowhere (+ very hard to get away from US websites). Thanks for any help,



I’m not sure if there’s a great deal out there that would constitute light reading, as it’s a very broad subject. I know Tolley’s Tax Guide is popular amongst tax practitioners.

Otherwise for small owner managed Limited Companies common points of discussion are.

  • Rules on issuing dividends
  • Director Loans
  • IR35 Rules
  • Record keeping practices

HMRC also run a Twitter account dedicated to providing help for small businesses, the guidance there is very useful.



Thank you very much Matthew - I will take a look.


To be honest, your questions are one your accountant should be answering for you, it’s all pretty straight forward for them to explain it if you ask.