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In our previous private practice post we set out some points for you to consider as the lockdown eases and there is some return to normality. This is available on our website.

Independent Practitioner Today has also kindly published our pointers here.

Towards the end of the article we highlighted some tax planning opportunities and advice that will be set out below and for which further detailed guidance can be provided on a personal basis.

The tax planning will be split between those who practice as individual practitioners or in partnership say with their spouse or partner and those of you that have limited companies.

Sole Practitioner/Partnership

If you have a 31 March or 5 April financial year end then for the year 2020/21 the first part of the year will have seen little or no private practice activity.

The Revenue will allow the 31 July 2020 tax payment (your second payment on account for the tax year 2019/20) to be deferred until 31 January 2021.

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With the NHS and private hospitals triggering the de-escalation clause to allow some private work and NHS elective surgery, we take a look to the future from a financial perspective of how private practice can survive during the pandemic.

Income

Income for all practitioners has taken a huge hit in the last couple of months and will continue over the coming weeks.

New protocols to deal with patient consultations, investigations and procedures will mean less patients can be seen, investigated and operated on within the time span compared to pre COVID 19.

This means less income unless fees are reassessed upwards.

The private hospitals by way of the NHS block booking of their facilities effectively received a subsidy to assist them over the 3 month period that in most cases saw little use of their facilities.

The private hospitals will be acutely aware of the huge list of NHS patients needing treatment and will no doubt seek contracts to treat them for the NHS. This will provide an opportunity for additional private work but at what rates?

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