ATT & Legislation

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Julie2011
Julie2011 Registered Posts: 33 Epic contributor 🐘
Afternoon All

Just started to study ATT, the tax legislation arrived today, I was amazed by the number of volumes!! I was expecting a couple of books but not 7!

I need to know.... do you have to buy this much every year? or once you have a set of legislation do you just buy updates/changes volumes each year??

Thanks
Julie

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  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    I've done 3/4 of the ATT now. The legislation is bloomin' brilliant. I love it. Took me a while (and it looks daunting!) but it's fantastic now I understand how to use it. I swear the AAT ought to beef up its tax exams to include it, now I know about it, I feel it's essential....

    Anyway, back on topic, strictly speaking yes you need a new copy every year as the law changes. I don't think you can just buy the updates. And anyway, as new finance acts amend old tax acts, the new volumes bring the amendments into the old legislation, so it's not just about new laws.

    I did wing my Personal Tax exam this year with 2007-08 Tolley's Yellow and I passed, but there was a long form question on FA2008/ FA2009 new penalties which I didn't properly have (there is some of it in FA2007 which I did have) so I had to cobble that one together and I passed, but that scared me, so I bought the 2010-11 for the exam I sat this week.

    I say it depends on what the changes are as to whether you really need new books. Obviously the more up to date the better, but if the changes are minor or you can remember them, you might be ok with older books, depends on you and the actual changes.

    I probably won't buy new Yellow books now until some major FA changes (but that's for practice use, as opposed to exam reference material).

    The legislation is brilliant (did I say that already :lol:) - I have already used it quite a few times at work since understanding how to use it. It's given me the confidence to go straight to the law and not rely on someone else's interpretation of it.

    Good luck in your studies, the ATT is fab.
  • KaelaH
    KaelaH Registered Posts: 131 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    I've started studying ATT this year too, although Personal circumstances have meant I had to bypass this sitting, I will be sitting business & personal tax in May. Is it just the yellow manuals you buy? Can I be cheeky and ask where you got them from and how much they were? Kaela
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    I got mine off EBay, but I had to buy the Orange (only needed for VAT) new. I was lucky, got the full set of Yellow for under fifty quid.
  • Julie2011
    Julie2011 Registered Posts: 33 Epic contributor 🐘
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    Under £50 thats amazing! Need to do more searching next time!

    I bought mine from Lexis Nexis, they have a student discount voucher that you can down load and were about £100.

    I too am doing mine in May next year, Good Luck! I need to get back into Study mode!

    Thanks for your reply Monsoon, loving using my new books, get the feeling I will wonder what I did without them!

    Do you think Its worth buying some for the previous few years?? Did I hear a rumour that once a full member of ATT you receive a copy of Tolleys every year as part of your membership subscription!?!?!?
  • Julie2011
    Julie2011 Registered Posts: 33 Epic contributor 🐘
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    Sorry forgot to say I bought them all! Orange and Yellow!
  • mc25
    mc25 Registered Posts: 232 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    I am glad to see I am not the only one on the same boat. I was meant to sit for my exams in Nov this year but had to put them back to May next year I am doing paper 1 and 7, I have the old yellow and orange books for 2010-2011 which i guess i will need to but new ones to cover 2011-2012, I bought mine of Tolley Traning and I was hoping to be able to buy just the updates as it seems a waste buying another 7 books which maybe not all the info will be updated. I will be quite keen to hear what others have to say about this.
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    It's Tolley's Tax Guide (the white one) you get as a full ATT member, I believe, not the Yellow & Orange.

    No point getting prior year Yellow & Orange as all prior revisions of the law will be included in the most recent one.

    Enjoy them! They are awesome.

    mc25, I did Paper 1 in May, it was ok. You know Paper 7 is now the e-assessments and you can sit them from 01/03/2012?

    Depending on what the changes are between 2010-11 and 2011-12 you might get away with using the 2010-11 Yellow books (I used 0708 Yellow for my P1 exam in May this year and got away with it).

    I think you have to buy the set every year though if you want each year's update. Would be happy to know if I've got the wrong end of the stick though!
  • mc25
    mc25 Registered Posts: 232 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    I have bought my study material from the Tolley Traning (i have 2 of them) To be honest I only found out about paper 7 in October and that's one of the other reason I had to cancel my exams for November. It seem interesting I just need to create time and put my mind into it. I love tax and law hence the decision to study ATT. Monsoon have you done paper 7 yet?
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    No, I did put in for paper 7 for the november exams but I deferred it to next year as I didn't have time to do two exams at once. So I will be braving the e assessments next year as well. I can't stand the subject matter. I love the tax exams but law and ethics, well, I'm not looking forward to it.
  • mc25
    mc25 Registered Posts: 232 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    Monsoon thanks for your reply once again, could i just ask, how long did you study for your paper 1 before you sat for your exams and also, the yellow and orange books do we have to take all of them during exams, thats my main worry, I am only asking from your experience as you have recently sat for the paper. Thanks
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    mc25 wrote: »
    Monsoon thanks for your reply once again, could i just ask, how long did you study for your paper 1 before you sat for your exams and also, the yellow and orange books do we have to take all of them during exams, thats my main worry, I am only asking from your experience as you have recently sat for the paper. Thanks

    Not long enough! I decided to take paper 1 in January, ordered the books in either Jan or Feb, did a little bit of work in Feb and March, and then spent a week cramming before the exam. I just don't have the time or the discipline for regular study if I'm not on a college course. I seem to have gotten away with it so far, but don't think I will for my CTA (which I plan on doing after ATT).

    You don't have to take any legislation in with you, and if you do take any in, you don't have to take every book, or have the right year. E.g. I took 0708 yellow into a 2011 exam. I didn't have the orange at that point. You definitely need to take the legislation in with you though; the point of these exams is not to memorise the answers button know how to use the legislation to look up the answers and apply it to the question being asked.

    Oh, and you want a small suitcase for taking the books into the exams with you :lol:
  • mc25
    mc25 Registered Posts: 232 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    Thanks

    Thanks for your reply Monsoon. I know what you are saying about the descipline, when I sat for my AAT, I was really good at doing all the work more or less every night, but with the ATT, since I am doing it via distance learning, I am struggling to spare the time...

    I will start shopping for the brief case...lol....

    I better get cracking then I wont have alot of cramming to do in March....lol.... fingers crossed and I hope i wont postponed them again this time.

    Good luck in your revision for paper 7
  • deanshepherd
    deanshepherd Registered Posts: 1,809 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    I didn't bother taking the legislation in with me. On a hot summers day getting into central London is bad enough without having to drag around 7 door stops with you.

    Thumbing through the legislation will just slow you down and distract you from getting on with the questions you can actually answer.
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    I didn't bother taking the legislation in with me. On a hot summers day getting into central London is bad enough without having to drag around 7 door stops with you.

    Thumbing through the legislation will just slow you down and distract you from getting on with the questions you can actually answer.
    I hope you're in wind-up mode Dean! ;-)

    Don't take the legislation in only if you really know the syllabus and have an incredible memory. There is no way I would have passed without it. No way at all. And I finished both exams early :p The whole point of the ATT is being able to use the texts.
  • JodieR
    JodieR Registered Posts: 1,002 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    Totally agree with monsoon on that one! I dedicated a generous chunk of study time to familiarising myself with using the legislation and by exam-time could look things up in seconds. It helped so much not having to worry about remembering rates and lists and tiny details - all I had to remember was what heading the topic came under in the index.
  • deanshepherd
    deanshepherd Registered Posts: 1,809 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    No wind up.

    What's the pass mark? 50%?

    You don't need to know the fine detail of everything you just need to take the time to work through each question properly.

    Many unsuccessful students lose hours trying to pick up 1 or 2 difficult extra marks in the legislation at the expense of getting the easy ones on the next question.

    Take them in for comfort if you wish but don't even open them until you have answered every question and gone back through at least once to double check. Then, if you have time, get the legislation out and have a quiet read while you wait for everyone else to finish.
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    Your memory must be way better than mine Dean! There is no way in the world I would have passed without the books. I knew how to use them and it took seconds to find what I needed.

    "State two instances where [insert obscure tax rule here]" Tolleys, copy the law word for word, 2 easy marks. No books? Darn, no marks.

    In my VAT exam they were essential. I probably could have winged the personal tax exam without them, maybe (I got 69% and don't really remember using the books lots, but I did need them for one of the long form questions, so I probably did need them). I didn't need them for BTAP but then I could do it standing on my head and then later found out I was exempt, haha.

    The whole point of ATT is knowing how to use the legislation as they realise we can't keep everything in our head. We aren't supposed to memorise it, but are supposed to know how to look up and apply something. I think aiming to do the exams with the books actually helps you with more skills that will be of relevance in the workplace. Memorising stuff for an exam isn't usually a lasting memory. And these aren't exams we want to pass to get a tick in a box, they are exams we want to pass to further our knowledge and expertise. Using the books properly will help you get more out of the qualification. That's just my opinion (apparently, a strongly held one!). :)

    Edited to add: I agree with you Dean about time management and your methods, it's good advice. Using books or not, you should only spend a certain amount of time on each question and then move on. I think for ATT it's 1.8 minutes per mark (3 hours and 100 marks in total).
  • andrewtdk
    andrewtdk Registered Posts: 150 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    I think i have to say i agree with Dean on this one although i understand both sides of the argument.

    I think all the main points that are likely to come up you should memorise because to me thats the main reason of doing the qualification. I tryed to learn as much as i could so there was only a few topics where i felt i might need the legislation so it would be easier to pinpoint this information should i have required it although i only actually took the books to one of the exams. For someone like me who worked up to the end on the exams i think its best to skip parts where its a difficult 1 or 2 pointer and move on to trying to get as many points as you can on the next 15-20 mark question. The legislation is great though and you should definitely use it should you have time but i think you need to get the right balance on how much you rely on the legislation or it could be very easy to mismanage your time.
  • LynWest
    LynWest Registered Posts: 122 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    Thank you for having this thread! From all i have read above, it sounds like the qualification is well worth the cost and time invested. I have been thinking about it for a while and decided that i want to register and start my ATT study. I am going to register in February after the 31st Jan deadline for SA as i need to concentrate on that first. :S :)
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    LynWest wrote: »
    Thank you for having this thread! From all i have read above, it sounds like the qualification is well worth the cost and time invested. I have been thinking about it for a while and decided that i want to register and start my ATT study. I am going to register in February after the 31st Jan deadline for SA as i need to concentrate on that first. :S :)
    Hooray!
    May you love it as much as I have!
  • Newbie
    Newbie Registered Posts: 229 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    Im in the same position I want to register after January madness, I think I need to be registered for six months before I can sit an exam is that still correct? (ps great post!)
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    Yes I think that's right, so for the May sitting I think you need to register ASAP. It does say on the ATT website I believe :)
  • noodles
    noodles Registered Posts: 308 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    When I took the VAT paper I took a really old version in with me and looked at it once and probably gained 1 mark and I passed the exam. I have just taken paper 1 (Pers Tax) and did not buy any books or learn with them. I have to say that I did find the paper difficult and not sure if I will scrape through but I am not sure having books in the room would have made any difference, I was writing to the last minute. My problem is that I get exam scared and do not plan the question, I rush straight in and then realise that I did not read the question properly. I am enjoying not having any books out until January and then it is either re learning personal tax (hope not!) or final subject Ethics. Or just maybe I may do Ethics and then cram again for Pers tax. It will be so nice to finish the exams as they take over your life.
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon Registered Posts: 4,071 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    I agree with your last comment noodles! I can't wait to get this qual finished.

    I suppose I should point out that I'm someone who works with tax every day, finds exams really straightforward and gets them done fairly quickly, so people reading my comments may want to take that into account too!

    I should also point out that I don't have much time to study and so I focused my revision on learning the things I couldn't look up, and making sure I knew where to look everything up. I absolutely looked up the answers in order to have a hope in hell of passing the VAT exam, having merely crammed for a week beforehand. I learned how to calculate retail schemes in the exam by reading the relevant VAT notice... I'm going to have to actually work for my ethics and law tests next year as its all memory.... :/

    Noodles, it sounds like you know what your problems with exams are. I'm guilty of not reading the question properly; I have RTFQ inked on my calculator.....! Tangent, those cheap casio calculators are brilliant, my RTFQ calculator is the one i used for my AAT exams and i last sat one of those in 2006 and its an everyday calculator... If you have to resit paper 1, maybe you need to work on exam technique as well as technical content and computation. if that's the case, good luck! :)

    I guess different people have different styles, but I think everyone should start out trying to use the legislation even if you don't plan to use it in the exam, simply because it's a very, very useful skill to have in working life.
  • LynWest
    LynWest Registered Posts: 122 Beyond epic contributor 🧙‍♂️
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    i think, please don't quote me on it that you have to be registered 7 months before you can sit exams. Really looking forward to :))
  • KaelaH
    KaelaH Registered Posts: 131 Dedicated contributor 🦉
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    Well, my legislation books all turned up today. I was greeted with a rather perplexed postwoman who was wondering how such a relatively small box could weigh quite so much lol!!
    I can definitely see where the suitcase could come in handy :o)
    Just got to figure out how to use them to find out what I need now.

    How I wish there was an 'idiots guide to tax'!!!
  • stevo5678
    stevo5678 Registered Posts: 325
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    Learning to use the legislation

    I guess different people have different styles, but I think everyone should start out trying to use the legislation even if you don't plan to use it in the exam, simply because it's a very, very useful skill to have in working life.[/QUOTE]

    Hi Monsoon, have to say I agree with your view on this. As an ATT student sitting in May I have kind of ignored the legislation so far as it is seems like a nightmare to navigate. Although you have swung me with your work place relevance argument. It would surely be a valuable skill to use in practice (no pun intended). However I feel exam wise such use of legislation will not be essential (helpful yes) until CTA standard questions ( I too plan to move onto this next). But why not get to grips with it now?

    My main reason for this post is to ask you for your tips on using the legislation and how you got to grips with it properly. Is there a thread or guidance you can point me to?

    Many thanks Stevo
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