Christmas greetings, reminders and a wish list for our members and other SMEs.

11th December 2019. Updated 23rd December 2019.

CPA’s closing times over the Christmas, who pays for the party, protecting your business in cold and flu season and what gifts SME owners really want.

CPA’s Winter closure

For business owners  it is often the busiest time of the year and many also face a cashflow crunch as they search for the money to pay for the xmas party and staff bonuses, buy christmas stock and find customers have a whole lot of seasonal excuses for delaying payment.

Here at The Credit Protection Association, we appreciate the pressure this time of the year has on finances.

So we want to ensure our Members and clients can maximise cash flow right up to the festive big day.

It will be worth planning ahead to allow us to get started on any bad payers or late payments that are still unresolved.

Please pass the matter to us as soon as possible as the quicker we act, the more likely we are to be successful!

The Credit Protection Association will be closed for the holiday period with the office closing at midday on Tuesday 24th December 2019 (not Friday 20th – as incorrectly and optimistically  posted originally) and re-opening on Monday 6th January 2020.

So if you want any outstanding, overdue accounts chased on your behalf before the break, make sure to get those instructions to us via the members area of the website by midday Monday 23rd December 2019.

The website will be live and remain available throughout the break.

Any debts updated to the site will be chased upon our return.

If there are any other issues or queries you would like to discuss with us, please don’t hesitate to get in contact! We want all our members to have a worry free Christmas!

Don’t hesitate, or leave it until the last minute, otherwise, you risk having to wait until 2020!

From all of the staff here at The Credit Protection Association, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year!

If we don’t hear from you before then, see you all in 2020!

Who is paying for your party?

Have you thought about the rules around Christmas party expenses and deducting them from tax returns.

Analysis by accountancy software firm FreeAgent shows that alcohol is the most claimed expense over Christmas, yet just a quarter of firms made a claim, while only one in 10 file an expense for food.

According  HMRC’s rules,  there is annual tax relief on up to £150 per person attending a work event, including extra guests, or £125 plus VAT – but the party must be an annual event and be open to all staff to qualify for the tax break.

Stephanie Wilson of BDO comments: “It is key to bear in mind that HMRC is taking an increasing interest in how organisations classify staff and business entertaining, setting up specialist teams of corporate tax, employment tax and VAT specialists to undertake specific reviews of entertaining expenditure.”

Its also cold & flu season

With all the festivities it is also good to remember it is cold and flu season. Each year, businesses across the country face the issue of what to do about colds and influenza in the workplace.

While most SMEs can barely afford for staff to be away at this time of year, making people bring their infectious ailments to work can often cause even more disruption.

The spread of cold and flu viruses can have a devastating effect on your company’s productivity.

Employee absences can slow your processes and cause delays in meeting your customers’ needs.

If employees do show up for work while they are ill, they may be sluggish and unable to provide peak performance.

In addition, they may spread the viruses to you or your other employees, continuing the cycle of diminished productivity.

Both of these illnesses are highly contagious and easily spread indoors.

Fortunately, however, you can prevent the spread of colds and influenza in your workplace, keeping your company’s productivity as steady as possible

Remember the NHS slogan  Wash it, Bin it, Kill it 

There is a reason why it’s so regularly broadcast.

Cold and flu viruses are airborne – spread through droplets that are released into the air when an infected person coughs, sneezes or even breathes.

Hand-to-mouth is the most common transmission, so eating, nail biting or touching the mouth area can all lead to infection.

  • One of the most important steps you can take to avoid the spread of colds and the flu is encouraging hand washing. Everyone in your workplace should wash his hands before and after using the bathroom, before eating or preparing food, and after sneezing, coughing or blowing his nose. Washing with soap and water for at least 15 seconds may help to prevent illness, but using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer may help as well.
  • The NHS recommends that you cover your mouth and nose with a tissue and then throw that tissue away immediately, in order to prevent the virus from transferring to the surface you put it down on.   If a tissue is not to hand encourage staff to  to cough or sneeze towards the floor or into the crook of their arms.  And remind them to then wash their hands afterward.
  • Encourage Vaccination. The flu jab is one of the most effective ways to prevent the flu from spreading. It actually reduces your chances of getting flu by 60%, depending on age. Although there are different and various strains of flu every year, the vaccination protects against the types that scientists determine to be the highest risk. If you want your team to be flu-free, arrange for your employees to get the flu jab. There are various companies, such as Boots and Bupa, offering corporate flu vaccination services – at no cost to your employees.
  • It is important that you remind your employees that they should never be hesitant to take a sick day because they think you might be against it. Of course, doing this relies on you being able to trust your team to know when they are maybe a little run down and when they are *really ill*. Communication goes hand in hand with a healthy, productive team, so ensure you make it clear that employees’ health comes before anything else.
  • If your employee is at work but clearly has a cold, ensure that person has everything they need to actively prevent spreading the infection – for example, antibacterial gel, wipes and tissues.

What SME owners really want for Christmas

As Christmas approaches many people are excitedly waiting to exchange gifts. But what business owners do you have on your list?

Here are a few ideas of what we think business owners might want this year.

Spoiler alert: There’s no socks or jumpers.

A government serious about tackling the late payment culture

With  SMEs having to wait twicce as long for payment in 2019 as in 2018 , banishing late payment is something that most small business owners would like to see happen this Christmas.

Successive governments have introduced new legislation to tackle the problem, but due to the threat to goodwill the measure are barely used.

In fact, it seems the problem is getting worse as the number of SMEs experiencing overdue payments has hit 54%, marking the highest level since 2015.

Instead, the onus remains on businesses to protect themselves to ensure that they don’t become victim to late payment and the associated cash flow problems.

If you have experienced late payment CPA help you get paid faster, and we can make sure you get compensated for late payments you’ve experienced in the past. See “CPA is passionate about late payment” below.

An end to Brexit uncertainty

Ever since the June 2016 EU referendum, business leaders have been calling on the government to give them clarity about how Brexit will look.

Now, with the General Election approaching, there is increased uncertainty about what might happen or when.

Whilst the Election result will provide some idea of what might happen, it is highly unlikely that businesses will get the answers they desire for Christmas.

Business rates reform

We’ve talked about it many times before but Business rates have long been a cause of complaint for businesses, particularly smaller companies or those in the manufacturing and retail sectors.

The tax has been blamed for contributing to the destruction of the UK High Street and an endless stream of  store closures and insolvencies across the country.

Most business owners simply want a fairer system which allows retailers to compete fairly with their online competitors.

As we approach the General Election most of the political parties have promised to address the problem.

The Conservatives and Labour have both pledged to review business rates and the Liberal Democrats have said they would scrap them entirely.

It’s unlikely any kind of reform will happen in time for Christmas but maybe business owners will get lucky next year.

A break

Almost one in 10 small business owners across the UK haven’t taken a holiday since at least 2014, according to a survey from Simply Business.

This could be putting their health and wellbeing at risk and shows that a well-needed break is deserved.

The most common barrier cited as preventing them from taking a break was the potential loss of earnings (62%).

Plus, nearly one in five (19%) said they find holidays stressful because they’re not bringing in any money.

Even those who managed to get a break didn’t get to fully switch off.

A whopping 61% said they check emails on holiday, 51% book jobs so they’ve got work when they get back and 11% said they are regularly contacted by employees while they’re away, making it impossible to relax.

This suggests that even though business owners want a break they are unlikely to get one this Christmas.

even retirement offers no hope with many SME owners forced to work into their retirement age.

Small business owners are working well into their sixties with one in five aged 66 or over, according to UHY Hacker Young, which has released a report detailing how work patterns have shifted over the years.

The study also conversely shows that individuals are becoming less likely to stay in one job for long periods of time, with the average worker changing their job every five years.

James Price, of UHY Hacker Young, adds that the outcome of Brexit could make it more difficult for directors to sell a small business quickly keeping SME owners in businesses longer than they planned.

CPA’s late payment compensation scheme has been helping business owners uncover within their business more money than they would have got for a sale. Talk to us to see how.


With rising business costs and late payment putting pressure on cash flow, it’s not surprising that maintaining a healthy cash flow is one of the biggest concerns for small businesses.

Almost half a million businesses are now in significant financial distress, according to Begbies Traynor.

So, it’s clear that a cash flow boost would be welcome news for many small business owners.

If you sold B2B on credit and need a cash flow boost we could help. We have been uncovering hidden funds in the form of late payment compensation from former customers to give you that cash flow boost.

A clone? Or how about some help?

Are you among the many business owners who struggle with delegation and never have enough hours in the day to do the myriad of tasks necessary in your business.

Maybe a clone is the answer!

According to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), in 2019 76% of UK private sector businesses had no employees. If you are among them then maybe you feel you have no choice but to do everything yourself.

A clone would enable you to successfully complete all the business tasks required.

However in the absence of a major scientific breakthrough in the next few weeks, why not outsource some of the boring tasks.

Nobody likes credit control debt collection, well nearly nobody. We at CPA love it. Let us help you with your credit management and free up some of your time for other key tasks

Do you sell on credit?

With pressures on the cash flow it is essential that you stay on top of the credit limits you grant customers and watch carefully for any late payments.

Those customers will look for the easiest option  to boost their cash-flow. Don’t let it be you.

You can’t just assume your customers can and will pay you eventually, no matter how big their name is.

It is essential to have credit management systems in place to monitor and check your customers credit worthiness.

It is also best practice to use a trusted third party like CPA to make sure you are paid on time by customers, no matter how good a name they have.

About CPA

The Credit Protection Association can help!

Formed in 1914, CPA has been providing credit management services to SMEs for over 100 years.

At the Credit Protection Association, we provide first class credit information that can help you avoid being over extended to customers who are at risk. Our monitoring service can flag up warning signs long before the end, giving you the chance to adjust and reduce your exposure. We provide recommended credit limits and credit scores on a traffic light system and can help you set appropriate credit policies for your customers.

We regularly publish lists of the latest insolvencies but by then it is too late. Our credit reports however predict approximately 96% of company insolvencies long before they arrive.

Companies in trouble usually have very bad cash flow and they try to deal with it by delaying payment to their suppliers, increasing your exposure to them.

If you supply on credit, help us help you identify the risks.

Why use a third party collector?

As a third party collector, we can also get your payments prioritised over those who are not as hot on collections. When your customer receives a letter from the Credit Protection Association regarding their outstanding account, they are going to want to get that resolved as a priority. Our overdue account recovery service can get your unpaid invoices to the top of their “to do” list and get your invoice paid.

Over the years we have collected billions in overdue invoices for our customers.

Our debt recovery and credit management services give our members the financial freedom needed to grow and prosper, while our new Late Payment Compensation department could unlock hidden potential and offer the compensation needed to springboard your business to success.

You might be hesitant about contacting a debt collection agency. What are they going to be like?

Can they help your particular type of business?

There is no need for concern. CPA are courteous, helpful and very probably have had direct experience of working with your type of business.

Debt collection agencies are not all alike.

Success lies in both recovering money and keeping customers happy. The Credit Protection Association was founded in 1914 and  has helped tens of thousands of UK businesses to collect outstanding payments and reduce the risk of incurring bad debt. We believe that creditors deserve to be paid for the work or goods they have supplied but we fully understand the need to maintain
the best possible relationship with customers!

At The Credit Protection Association, we provide solutions, advice and back-up in all areas relating to the supply of services or goods on account. Client-members receive everything they need from a single source to reduce debtor days and write-offs.

The Credit Protection Association has helped has assisted tens of thousands of UK businesses with their credit control requirements, since the First World War.

We are polite, firm and efficient when it comes to recovering outstanding debt.

“We have used CPA for a number of years now. The website is easy to navigate around with lots of helpful reports. The staff are always at hand and very friendly. CPA has  helped us reduce our debt over the years and keep track of potential issues with our customers.”
~ CPA client in Buckinghamshire

“The service from CPA has proved to be everything that you said it would be. We have already seen a huge benefit. We have had a number of overdue accounts paid promptly and directly to us. It is also a huge weight off our mind to know that once we have passed an overdue payment over to you, you take care of everything whilst keeping us informed.
~ Credit Controller client in Warrington

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections


Ready to speak to an advisor?

For help or advice on credit management, entirely without obligation.

Call us today

0330 053 9263

CPA is passionate about late payment

The Credit Protection Association has been protecting smaller firms against poor payment practices for over 100 years.

We are extremely passionate about breaking the late payment culture that holds back the UK economy and threatens many SMEs with cash flow difficulties being the single biggest killer of Britain’s small businesses.

If you were regularly paid late we can help. Those former customers used you to boost their own cashflow, regularly paying you late.

As a result you had extra costs, you had the distraction of having to chase payment, you had opportunity costs because your capital was tied up in their late invoices.

Under little used legislation, you are entitled to compensation for those late payments.

Now you can boost your own cash-flow.

CPA can help unearth the those hidden treasures.

We have the technology to reveal the compensation you are due and we have the extensive experience and expertise to then turn those claims into cash.

Yes, CPA can help you boost your business cash-flow.

Don’t let your bankers control you, contact CPA today.

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections

Read our blog here on how to crack down on the late payment culture.

Read our blog here on how to give late payers the slap they need.

The “Why” of the late payment culture.

New PM should walk the walk and back small firms over late payments

Paying late is “crack cocaine” to big business.

Late payment culture risks “spiraling out of control”

visit our late payment compensation page

See our full blog and FAQ on late payment compensation

Do you realise you could be sitting on a fortune?

Late payments often result in a cash flow crunch and leave SMEs in need of a cash injection.

If you sold B2B on credit then there may be a hidden source of capital you can call on.

If you fancy an bit of extra cash in your business, rather than jumping through hoops with your bank, you could look to uncover the resources from an unexpected source within your own business.

Not many are aware but there could be a hidden fortune within your business, sitting there, just waiting to be uncovered and released.

We can help you uncover the pile of gold, you didn’t even know you were sitting on.

If you trade with other businesses and were often paid late then you could be entitled to significant compensation.

Under little known and under-utilised legislation your business could be due huge amounts in compensation that you didn’t even know about.

Let’s be clear – this is not a way to weaken any customer relationships you value. It is one that identifies who’s been paying late and then recover the potentially significant sums in compensation using Late Payment Legislation from businesses where the relationship has already ended.

You can pick and choose who you want us to follow up – but once we’ve agreed which companies you’d like to pursue compensation from it’s a fast process and there’s no financial outlay to you whatsoever. My team at CPA put its expertise to work to recover the compensation due and fight late payment culture.

That compensation could provide the cash boost your business needed.

But don’t delay, that compensation evaporates if not claimed within six years of the late payment.

How can CPA help?

CPA has developed a unique technology to dig into your accounting records and discover the cash injection you are due by means of compensation. The software does all the hard work. Our software interacts over the cloud with over 300 different software packages, working directly with your accounts package, just so long as it’s stored on a computer.

We recognise that most companies do not have the resources to spend time on the identification and calculation of Late Payment Compensation. Our service can produce an Analyses within just a few days with (usually) less than 30 mins of co-operation from our clients. We work directly with over 300 accounting packages but can also work with bespoke accounts packages. Indeed, speed is essential as the oldest invoices may fall foul of the 6-year time limit.

Once the Sales Ledger Analyses is made available to clients, all that is required is that management decide which commercially sensitive ex-customers to remove from the list and return it to us.

CPA then uses its years of collection experience to explain and recover the Late Payment Compensation Claims. Clients do not handle any part of the recovery process as our team will take all communications from the companies against who the claims has been made. Often, it’s simply a case of explaining the legislation, sometimes we have to go all the way and enforce the legislation through the courts.

The result is that we are realising clients’ claims worth tens and sometimes hundreds of thousands of pounds which, of course, is pure net profit.  You may also be among the recipients of “hundreds of thousands of pounds” should you elect to take advantage of our services.

We do the work, you receive the cash.

If you have supplied goods and services to businesses on credit and were regularly paid late then you could be due significant sums in late payment compensation.

We are talking to companies and unearthing claims in the hundreds of thousands from former business customers who paid them late. Large business customers who abused their power to inflict unfair and sometimes illegal payment practices.

We are helping business owners  who are looking to boost the returns from their business before they retire. We are helping businesses who have lost major clients after years of loyal service to get properly compensated for systematic late payment. We are helping companies that were looking to close down, who looked insolvent and finding that cash injection they need to avoid insolvency.

Those former clients who regularly paid you late can finally be made to pay.

Ready to speak to an advisor?

For help or advice on credit management, entirely without obligation.

Call us today

0330 053 9263

The Credit Protection Association is a credit management company established in 1914. If you supply goods or services on credit then we can help you!

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections

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See all our latest news here!

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Read our blog here on how to crack down on the late payment culture.

Read our blog here on how to give late payers the slap they need.

25 excuses for late payment and how to get around them.

Read our Cash Flow Advice

Read about our overdue account recovery service

Read our blog – What is credit management?

Read our blog – How to select a debt collection agency

20 ways to avoid identity theft

see our blog – 15 steps to avoid invoice fraud

Overcoming 5 common reasons for disputed invoices

As insolvencies rise, could you spot these warning signs in your customers?

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections