UK Government’s tax department, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) directed that effective from April 1, 2011 all UK based companies must file their Corporate Tax returns (CT returns) comprising of statutory accounts and tax computations in iXBRL format. Introduction of iXBRL reporting resulted in significant improvement in reporting quality and data transparency. With a view to further enhance the benefits accrued from iXBRL reporting, the Financial Reporting Council (FRC), UK’s regulator for accounting, audit and actuarial professions recommended a shift from UK GAAP to the IFRS standard from January 1st 2015. The revised iXBRL tagging mandate will become effective for annual filings submitted on or after April 1, 2015.
In line with the revised iXBRL reporting, companies will have to adopt and report in accordance with the Financial Reporting Standards (FRS) 100,101 and 102 which are offshoots of the primary IFRS standard. However, those companies with less than £6.5M turnover will continue to use the Financial Reporting Standard for Smaller Entities (FRSSE) and are exempted from revised iXBRL filing requirement.
Due to this transition from UK GAAP to IFRS, it became necessary to revise the original taxonomy for iXBRL reporting. In the revised taxonomy, besides the change in accounting standard, other key change is the scope of tagging is revised from ‘minimum tagging requirements’ to ‘full tagging’. Additionally, the revised iXBRL taxonomy has implications on disclosure requirements and representation of accounts.
As a result of this revised iXBRL tagging, companies following UK GAAP will see a major impact on their reporting process. Firstly these companies are required to restate figures for previous years’ financials according to the new IFRS standard in their 2015 returns. In addition the categorization and presentation of reporting concepts, like deferred tax, in CT returns will also change. This may result in changes in the representation of company’s income statement and balance sheet.
FRS 101 and 102 are semantically different from UK GAAP, therefore conventional remapping from one taxonomy is not an option. To meet the new reporting requirements necessitated by revised taxonomy and accounting standard, companies may require the assistance of accounting standard experts and iXBRL technology specialists to safely guide them through the transition from UK GAAP to IFRS standard with minimum disruption in their regular accounting process.
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