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Over 100,000 small firms demand rethink on HMRC tax proposal

More than 100,000 small business owners and self-employed workers have joined forces to fight a Government proposal that would force them to file tax returns four times a year instead of annually.

Last week, The Telegraph revealed that complying with the new rules would cost these companies and individuals between 20pc and 150pc more in accountants’ fees, as well as heaping more red tape onto the nation’s most vulnerable firms.

An online petition created by small business owner Paul Johnson on the Government’s own portal on December 16 has been shared thousands of times on social media, and on Sunday, the petition passed 100,000 signatures, the point at which the Parliament is expected to debate the issue.

“The Conservatives are not working for small businesses in bringing such legislation but adding burden,” Mr Johnson said. “Each self-employed individual and small business will have the added burden of additional red tape, accountancy fees and potential for fines.”

The number of signatories is still rising fast, topping 103,000 on Monday.

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