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Hagar

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Everything posted by Hagar

  1. Well something does not add up.

    If anybody wants to check what NI Conts they should be paying on their salary the UK HMRC gives you a very simple calculator here -

    http://nicecalculator.hmrc.gov.uk/Class1NICs1.aspx

    Simply enter your gross pay and NIC Class and it tells you what you should be paying.

    rgds

    Hagar

     

     

     

  2. [quote user="BIG MAC"][quote user="Hagar"]

    So for a straightforward employee to pay over £100 a week in NI conts then they must be earning well over £200k per year.

    [/quote]

    If only...If only.

    Something awry with your sums or our payroll, ..............

    [/quote]

    Details are all here http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/employers/e12p4and5charts.pdf

    Admittedly my 200k figure was based on 2007 rates but even taking current rates the figure is £180k a year.

    The first £105 a week is free from NI

    Between 195 and 770 per week is charged at 11% (i.e NI conts are £73.15 a week for a salary of £40k per annum)

    On the balance of your salary you pay 1p in the pound in NI - to pay £100 a week in NI conts you must be earning an additional £2,685 per week (£26.85 *100) .

    £770 + £2685 = £3,455 a week = £179 660 per annum.

    You pay less/earn even more if you are contracted out of SERPS (or whatever they call it these days).

    Are you sure you are not including the employer's contribution in your £100 a week ???

    rgds

    hagar

     

  3. Yes, not that long ago, there was an upper earnings limit (UEL) above  which neither employer or employee paid any NI contributions. It was not a super high limit IRC - something less than £2k per month. i.e someone on 100k a year paid NI contributions of about 2.5% of their salary whereas someone on 25k a year paid close to 10%.

    The government then removed the employers limit but kept the employee limit for some years. The UEL for employees still exists and over £690 a week an employee only pays 1% of his earnings rather than the standard 11%.

    So for a straightforward employee to pay over £100 a week in NI conts then they must be earning well over £200k per year.

    rgds

    Hagar

  4. John,

    Easy way to find it is to walk out the back door of Café Felix into Rue d'Aigle d'Or and it's right in front of you.

    More interesting (to me anyway) is than Jean-Marc Boyer from Lastours will soon be opening a new resto right next door (the old L'Endroit).

    I hope they both work - an awful lot of businesses seem to find it pretty hard in Carcassonne  centre.

    rgds

    Hagar

  5. [quote user="parsnips"]

        I definitely agree with you on the UK pensions issue. This was originally presented as a National Insurance scheme to which everybody contributed the same amount and received the same level of pension (and widow's pension), this seemed very fair (even though we had no choice, as it was compulsory). Later it was amended so that people contributed according to their means(up to point) but still all received the same pension , this was a more "socialist" form of fairness , perhaps. 
       
    [/quote]

    That is completely wrong. The UK basic state pension, ever since it's introduction by Lloyd George 100 years ago, has always been funded by the following generation . i.e no UK pensioner has ever funded his/her own basic state pension.

    Contributions have always been based on an ability to pay - they have never been the same for everyone. Nor has the amount received always been the same (in LG's day even the basic pension was means tested and only payable to "people of good character").

    Today , whether or not you qualify for a basic state pension, and how much you receive, depends on a range of qualifting criteria which are not in any way related to the size of your contibution. Indeed it is perfectly possible to qualify for a full basic state pension without ever having paid NI contributions. . You may not like that - but what is your alternative ? A return to the poor houses of Lloyd George's day ?

    As a slight aside , most commentators agree that the biggest blow to pensions in the UK was the removal of the link to wages by ...........

    rgds

    Hagar

  6. [quote user="powerdesal"]Hagar,

    A Govt is supposed to look ahead, plan ahead, consider the future possibilities / probabilities and, above all, look after the country to the best benefit of the citizens. Can you honestly, hand-on-heart say the present Govt have done that?

    [/quote]

    No - but why would I? - what gives you the idea that I am a supporter of the present British Government ? (or the 70's Labour one for that matter).

    All I have done is present some "properly researched" facts and figures coupled with some mild critiscm of Thatcher and her people.

    rgds

    Hagar

  7. [quote user="velcorin"]

     There, no more arguements about true figures.

     http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/mfsd/iadb/Repo.asp?Travel=NIxIRx

    http://www.statistics.gov.uk/articles/economic_trends/ET626_CPI.pdf

    [/quote]

    Thanks velcorin - I could add this one which clearly shows that the figures I quoted on inflation in 1978/79 were "well researched" and correct. Nothing to do with "red labour mist". Also shows that Steve's employer was very generous indeed.

    http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_economy/RP04.pdf

    I accept there can be debate about exactly why interest rates and inflation rose so sharply and for so long after MT came to power. Personally I beleive it has much more to do with her doggedly following the monetarist theories of Keith Joseph and Milton Friedman than with the paying of labour debt.

    I met Keith Joseph a couple of times in 1979/80 - He struck me as coming from a completely different planet. One of my colleagues at the time asked me if I thought he was on drugs.

    rgds

    Hagar

     

     

  8. [quote user="Steve"]I wish some people would change the record.  How many more years are we going to blame Margaret Thatcher for everything bad that happens to the UK economy - for goodness sake it was 16 years ago!  Why not blame Churchill?  At the time I thought Mrs T was the devil incarnate as a lot of her policies affected us badly, but she had been left in a similar situation (as now) by the then Labour government and had some very difficult decisions to make - strikes occurring on a weekly basis, the car and many nationalised industires on their knees, rubbish uncollected, inflation running at 28% and a mountain of debt (sound familiar).  For the time she was prime minister at least we had some clout in Europe and beyond unlike the lame dog and soft touch for immigrants we are perceived as now.  People have very short memories.     [/quote]

    And quite distorted ones it appears.

    At the time of Thatcher's election in 1979 inflation was under 10% and had been falling regularly for months. It would be three years before it was to get that low again - peaking at around 22% mid 1980. On top of that her chancellor raised base rates to 17% within months of that election and almost doubled VAT. Highest base rate under Labour was 15%.

    I remember those times well and it was tough for both savers and borrowers - and very little to do with what she inherited from Labour.

    As to clout in Europe most of my european friends regarded her as either as a  dickensian war monger or some kind of throwback to victorian imperialism.

    rgds

    Hagar 

  9. If you bank with HSBC in the UK they can open an account for you in one of their French branches. You still have to provide a fair amount of paperwork but this will all be handled by your local UK branch. Movement of funds between France/UK are then very straightforward.

    I believe Barclays offer a similar service - there may be others.

    Failing that there is nothing wrong with Britline (at least in our experience).

    rgds

    Hagar

     

  10. Don't know how common it is but my local branch (BPS) has a machine where you pay in the cash. Simply put your card in in, type the PIN, select which account and then drop the cash in the slot. Regularly pay in amounts up to €1k .

    Funny thing happened the other week - took some cash out of the "hole in the wall" in the street - went into the bank to pay it directly into local account. Machine rejected 2 of the  €10 euro notes that their own cash machine had just payed out.

    Think I should stick to internet banking.

    Can't see why you should have a problem with the amounts you are talking about.

    rgds

    Hagar

  11. I also think €10 is about right.

    Having said that , for the second year running when they rang the bell the smallest note I could find was €20 ! - I don't have the gall to ask for change.

    Must remember to get my wife to answer the door next year.

    rgds

    Hagar

  12. Problem we had was not the size or capacity of the bag (it was after all bought in Toulouse airport precisely for this purpose and had already been through more than a dozen checks in at least 4 different airports).

    No - their argument was that it was not "vacuum sealed".

    By the time I got involved in the "discussion" they already had a young spanish girl in front of my wife in tears. I walked over and said "excuse me can I ask you something"

     - Answer "no!".

     me - "I beg your pardon !"

    I asked to see a supervisor - they simply refused. I tried to explain that "vacuum sealed" bags are not required and in any case would be totally impractical. They just stonewalled us all the way.

    Irony was I had an identical bag inside my carry-on that I hadn't removed - they didn't even notice it.

    - Ah the joys of air travel in the 21st Century !!

    rgds

    hagar

     

  13. [quote user="seb47"]

    .......I can always ask to speak to the head person and ask where in the regulations it states I cannot carry such a box. ....

    [/quote]

    Hopefully you should not have problems.

    If you do I wish you luck with "speaking to the head person". Last month coming back through East Midlands the staff on the belt simply refused to let us speak to any supervisor.

    They were claiming that my wife's cosmetics had to be enclosed in a "vacuum sealed " plastic bag - not the resealable plastic bag that we just happened to have bought at another airport.

    Ernie's got it right "they just make it up....."

    rgds

    hagar

     

  14. [quote user="ErnieY"]

    Yes of course we have paid for it, how can you say we have not ? [/quote]

    Actually my post was in response to two earlier posts on the previous page - particularly Bugsy's where he/she talks of " making a greater contribution to the pension fund" - What pension fund ?? It does not exist .

    [quote user="ErnieY"]....why should anybody be disqualified from reaping their due benefits. [/quote]

    Unlike some others on this thread I have never suggested they should. WFA is designed as a universal benefit i.e like health care in the UK it has no relation to any form of contribution . I think it should remain that way - others may disagree.

    [quote user="ErnieY"] ...........  I'm sure a great many would have welcomed the opportunity to not pay the proportion of their taxes which notionally goes towards the state pension ..............[/quote]

    I have never met anyone who would withold their taxes on the basis that it funds the state pension. - Unless of course they happen to believe the "myth" that there is some link between the taxes they pay and their own pension benefits.

    myth : A popular belief that is false or unsupported by facts.

    rgds

    Hagar

  15. [quote user="Boiling a frog"][quote user="Hagar"]

    Taking a broader view one can argue that ALL state benefits,pensions, public service pensions etc are actually paid for by taxing those in the "private sector" . Taking contibutions from public sector workers to then pay them benefits later is simply the treasury recycling the taxes paid by the private sector.

    rgds

    Hagar

    [/quote]

    Well  Blow me down

    I did not realise that Public sector employees did not pay income tax, National Insurance, VAT or excise duty.

    [/quote]

    Well - Now you know

    rgds

    Hagar

     

  16. Well put Derek.

    The problem is that there are large numbers in my parents' generation (born in the 1920's and who saw and supported the introduction of the welfare state) who feel that "the pact" has long since been broken.

    I feel that leaves many of my generation facing very uncertain futures as they reach retirement age  themselves.

    rgds

    Hagar   

  17. There seems to be a common myth running through this thread that people are entitled to WFA , state pension and other benefits because they have "paid for it" during their working lives.

    This a myth - all these benefits are paid from current government expenditure i.e they are paid for by those currently in work paying tax and NI - not from some mythical funds built up through previous contributions.

    The same is largely true of police pensions, and I guess, firemen as well.

    Taking a broader view one can argue that ALL state benefits,pensions, public service pensions etc are actually paid for by taxing those in the "private sector" . Taking contibutions from public sector workers to then pay them benefits later is simply the treasury recycling the taxes paid by the private sector.

    rgds

    Hagar

     

     

     

     

  18. [quote user="Âme"]

    If the DVD player has a tuner and a screen it counts, but a PC with TV card doesn't (yet!)

    [/quote]

    That' just about to change - "Audiovisuel Les ordinateurs soumis à la redevance"

    This from today's midi-libre --- http://www.midilibre.com/RUB_ML_HIGHTECH.php5

    rgds

    Hagar

  19. [quote user="David"]

    ..........I just found the web site of the "Brilliant" and it looks quite plush, and has a photo of Prince Charles.  It also has linen napkins!  Perhaps it has changed since you were there - it does look very good but perhaps quite expensive now.

    David

    [/quote]

    David, -- maybe your right - it's about 4 years since I was last there. Its getting some rave reviews http://www.london-eating.co.uk/2323.htm and even Gordon Ramsy has put in an appearance.

    However - looking at their sample menu I see they continue to serve their curries in portions of 3, 5, 7 etc. This was one of the things I loved about the place - superbly prepared dish for 5 people at around £6 a head - assuming the quality has been maintained then that's outstanding VFM.

    rgds

    hagar 

  20. [quote user="David"]

    Drinks are mostly pints of beer, but wine can be had.

    David

    [/quote]

    If it is the same one then they used to offer a free poppadom with every pint. Hence the expression "fancy another poppadom before heading back to the office ???".

    hagar

  21. [quote user="David"]

    For me, the best curry house in London is the Halal Restaurant which is a small back street restaurant in the small lanes just south of Aldgate.

    Fantastic curries for all palates, cheap, and far better than any of the Brick lane places.  No fancy service, like the Fat Duck etc., and do not expect linen napkins!

    Drinks are mostly pints of beer, but wine can be had.

    Anyone else know of it?  I would hazard a guess that it might be the best and most authentic curry in the UK.  The place has been there for donkey's years and I think it predates all the Brick Lane restaurants.

    David

    [/quote]

    Hi David -- think I know the one - used to lunch there when working in Commercial Street. It was good and well liked by the people I worked with - all of whom had spent considerable time in Asia and on the Sub-Continent.

    For my money though the best curry restaurant in UK is the "Brilliant" in Southall. Similar - pretty basic decor and service but much better value than the likes of Bombay Brasserie, Virishwany's etc. Used to eat there with the locals - superb food.

    rgds

    Hagar

     

      

     

  22. More likely something to do with corrupt landlords claiming for fictitious tenents and using false adresses.

    rgds

     

    hagar

  23. [quote user="odile"]apparently most 'run of the mill' Indian restaurants in the UK cook on a similar principle. Pre-cooked meat to which different sauce mixtures are added at the last minute. I wonder how one can find out whether food is freshly cooked or not.
    [/quote]

    Ask them for a simple chicken curry "on the bone" NOT tandoori. If they can't do it then you know they are using the catering packs of ready prepared/cooked meat.

    rgds

    hagar

     

     

  24. Cannot see how anyone could classify a DVD player as a televison receiver. It's no closer to a TV than and old fashioned record player is to a radio.

    rgds

    hagar 

  25. Teapot, Sue(Spg) - glad you two turned up with your comments - reading this thread I was beginning to think the France I live in was on a different planet from the rest.

    rgds

    Hagar

     

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