If you aim at nothing, you will hit it with remarkable accuracy.
Every year we send out questionnaires for clients to check they've got everything ready. This creates a lot of information and can be quite tedious. Fortunately we don't require information which is already in their accounting system. However it is important, so here is a brief summary of some of the most common items you need to consider. For the same of simplicity we've assumed you have a 31 March balance date. There are other issues - we've only listed those relevant to most SME clients. Also these are just indicative - some require more consideration so you can't use this as a comprehensive check list.
Brief year end accounting check-list
Bad debts - these must be both bad AND physically written off before 31 March.
Stock - valuation at lower of cost or market value. Obsolete stock must be disposed of before 31 March.
Losses continuity - shareholder must be 49% continuous (66% continuity is required for imputation credits).
Entertainment - if non-deductible expenditure (usually 50%) has not been identified at the time of the transaction, a cumulative adjustment must be made for GST as well as tax-deductible expenses.
Fixed assets - review the fixed asset register.
FIF's - information is required including market value at year end.
Prepayments - exemptions mean that these can be claimed in many situations. However the rules differ according to the type of expense.
RWT on dividends - must be paid by 20 April.
Shareholder salaries - take extra care that salaries reflect contributions to the company.
Bonuses - these must be paid within 63 days of the year-end if they are to be claimed in the relevant year.