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Get to know: Creative Tax Reliefs

Creative Tax Reliefs Ltd are specialists in the Creative industry tax reliefs – a group of eight Corporation Tax reliefs available to companies in the theatre, film, High-End TV, Children’s TV, video games, animation, orchestra and museums and galleries sectors.  

The company was formed by Graham Suggett, former lead tax specialist with HMRC’s Creative Industries Unit in 2017 and has gone on to claim over £5m in Creative Industry tax credits for clients. Having been a tax inspector for 16 years, the last four with the Creative Industries Unit, Graham was aware that too few companies, particularly charitable ones, were claiming these niche reliefs and saw an opportunity to offer his experience directly to clients. 

“Working as a tax specialist with HMRC’s Creative Industries Unit was the most interesting and rewarding role I had during my time with HMRC.  However, a lot of companies and their advisers were struggling to understand how the reliefs worked which resulted in them either claiming too little or claiming too much and running the risk of an enquiry.  It was also obvious that a lot of companies simply weren’t claiming,” explains Suggett.  

As the company has gone from strength to strength, it became obvious that the experience of working with HMRC was proving invaluable.  Seeing that this could be applied to other areas, the company has been joined by other HMRC alumni: 

Andrew Alton – ex-HMRC R&D tax specialist

Before joining Creative Tax Reliefs Andrew Alton spent the best part of thirty years working for HMRC and the Inland Revenue before it. For the last 10 years of his time with HMRC, he was a Research and Development tax specialist on the Manchester Incentives and Reliefs Team where he enabled and promoted the Research and Development schemes providing support to claimant companies as well as enquiring into suspect claims.

He has an extensive knowledge and understanding of the schemes and of HMRC’s methodologies and expectations.  Prior to specialising in R&D, Alton worked as an investigator in Central and South London, as an operations manager in Large Business and in Strategy and Planning for the Directors Office of HMRC’s Contact Centres.  

Neil Adshead FCA – ex-HMRC Technical Accountancy team leader  

Neil Adshead is a Fellow of the ICAEW and has almost 30 years of experience of dealing with complex accountancy issues. After spending 10 years in various practices in the North West of England along with a spell in industry, Adshead joined a technical accountancy team in HMRC in 2000. This team advised tax specialists on accountancy treatment where there was an impact on taxation e.g., avoidance schemes, financial instruments and intangibles. He then went on to more senior strategic roles , managing teams of HMRC accountants and also teams of corporation tax specialists. He is experienced in settling cases using alternative dispute resolution and corporation tax compliance checks. 

Suggett is keen to emphasise that the team’s HMRC experience benefits not only companies directly but also their advisers. He explains if he had to sum up the firms approach to working with other professional advisers, it would be ‘plays well with others’.  Accountants can offer the benefit of Creative’s specialist skills to their clients safe in the knowledge that the firm will be professional, highly experienced and being ex-HMRC, act within the limits of what is allowed by the legislation we used to oversee.   

Creative Tax Reliefs work on a commission basis and charge 15% of the benefit obtained by the client.  This benefit includes any payable tax credit, reduction in Corporation Tax due or a refund of Corporation Tax already paid. Whilst working on a commission basis works for most clients, it might not work for the smaller or larger ones in which case Suggett says: “We are happy to cap the fee payable at a level that works for all parties.  We want clients and their advisers to be happy with the service we provide and to come back year on year.”  

You can see testimonials from some the firms clients at: Testimonials

For more information or to discuss working together contact Graham via:

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