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Forgetting your tax return deadline could cost you

If you need to complete a self-assessment tax return, midnight on 31 January should be a date that is etched into your diary. If it’s not, make sure it is now. The repercussions for not paying on time could be more than you think.

If you’re not sure what it is, a tax return is an annual statement of income and personal circumstances, used by HMRC to assess liability for tax.

Do I need to fill out a tax return?

Not everyone has to fill out a tax return, so don’t panic if this is all new information.

According to HMRC, you must always send a tax return if you’re self-employed, a partner in a business partnership or a company director. Our blog post tells you more.



The ten worst excuses given to HMRC revealed

Although these excuses did not work, HMRC do say they recognise on occasion that it may be difficult for taxpayers to complete their tax return on time.  So, if you do have a genuine reason do speak up. Say, for example, if your house has been severely affected by the recent floods, this could be considered a valid reason.

You will need to have evidence to back up any claim, but if you feel you have a valid reason you should contact HMRC as soon as possible. HMRC’s online guide tells you more.  

When do people submit their tax return?

Every year, more people are submitting their tax returns over Christmas and New Year. Did you?

What will happen if I submit my tax return late?

There will be an initial £100 fixed penalty, even if there's no tax to pay or if the tax due is paid on time.

Note, that after six months, you will be charged a further penalty of either £300 or 5% of the tax due (whichever is higher). Again, after 12 months, there will be a £300 charge, or another 5% charge of the tax due, depending on which is greater.

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