Q We run a small garden maintenance business. One of our largest private customers wants us to change our invoices, taking off any mention of gardening, but invoicing for "office cleaning" at his office so that he can pay by company cheque. What can we do? We do not want to lose the business, but are not willing to cheat the taxman.
A Unfortunately, this is not a new problem. For as long as I can remember, certain clients seem to think it quite acceptable to coerce small companies into evading tax, either by false documentation or cash payments. This attitude is most annoying, because they would never have the nerve to make such suggestions to large firms — only those they deem to be malleable and unwilling to lose the trade.
Consumer Rights Bill
Finally, if you are asked "do you accept cash?", the answer could be: "Yes, but I charge an extra £25 per payment to cover the costs of going to the bank with the money". They will then happily pay by electronic transfer of funds.