No Excuse!

Having been on the CIPP website this morning and read what was a rather interesting top 10 (reasons why employers felt they didn’t need to pay the National Minimum Wage) we thought we should compile and share a few of our favourite top 10’s.

The first is very apt for January; the top 10 unusual reasons people gave for being late with their tax returns:

  • My tax return was on my yacht, which caught fire.
  • A wasp in my car caused me to have an accident and my tax return, which was inside, was destroyed.
  • My wife helps me with my tax return, but she had a headache for ten days.
  • My dog ate my tax return…and all of the reminders.
  • I couldn’t complete my tax return, because my husband left me and took our accountant with him. I am currently trying to find a new accountant.
  • My child scribbled all over the tax return, so I wasn’t able to send it back.
  • I work for myself, but a colleague borrowed my tax return to photocopy it and lost it.
  • My husband told me the deadline was the 31st March.
  • My internet connection failed.
  • The postman doesn’t deliver to my house.

Aside from number 5 which we would likely show at least a little leniency towards, there are some bad excuses there…my dog ate it was never really going to fly!

The next top 10 from HMRC is the one which prompted this blog in the first place, the top 10 bizarre excuses bosses gave for being unwilling to pay the National Minimum Wage.

  1. The employee wasn’t a good worker so I didn’t think they deserved to be paid the National Minimum Wage.
  2. It’s part of UK culture not to pay young workers for the first 3 months as they have to prove their ‘worth’ first.
  3. I thought it was ok to pay foreign workers below the National Minimum Wage as they aren’t British and therefore don’t have the right to be paid it.
  4. She doesn’t deserve the National Minimum Wage because she only makes the teas and sweeps the floors.
  5. I’ve got an agreement with my workers that I won’t pay them the National Minimum Wage; they understand and they even signed a contract to this effect.
  6. My accountant and I speak a different language — he doesn’t understand me and that’s why he doesn’t pay my workers the correct wages.
  7. My workers like to think of themselves as being self-employed and the National Minimum Wage doesn’t apply to people who work for themselves.
  8. My workers are often just on standby when there are no customers in the shop; I only pay them for when they’re actually serving someone.
  9. My employee is still learning so they aren’t entitled to the National Minimum Wage.
  10. The National Minimum Wage doesn’t apply to my business.

We’re grateful for never having to work in a shop where either number 2 or number 8 applied!

The final list of top 10’s comes from a list of worst excuses given for missing work (these ones from the US):

  1. Employee said the ozone in the air flattened his tyres.
  2. Employee’s pressure cooker had exploded and scared her sister, so she had to stay home.
  3. Employee had to attend the funeral of his wife’s cousin’s pet because he was an uncle and pallbearer.
  4. Employee said her roots were showing and she had to keep her hair appointment because she looked like a mess.
  5. Employee ate cat food instead of tuna and was deathly ill.
  6. Employee said she wasn’t sick but her llama was.
  7. Employee was bowling the game of his life and couldn’t make it to work.
  8. Employee said he had better things to do.
  9. Employee ate too much birthday cake.
  10. Employee was bitten by a duck.

The moral to these is surely that you should try very hard not to find yourself in situations that you might be tempted to ‘blag’ your way out of.

So far as your tax returns are concerned, please make sure if you do have one to submit that you get it in on time!