Many of us will be more than happy to put 2020 behind us, but if you are in self-assessment, before you settle down for the Christmas and New Year celebrations, do remember that early on in 2021, you have a deadline to meet.
Because 31 January 2021 is an important date in the tax calendar – it’s the deadline for filing tax returns. If you’ve yet to file your tax return for 2019/20, then make sure you do so before midnight on 31 January – or you will incur an automatic £100 penalty, even if there is no tax due.
If you continue to delay, you face an escalating scale of penalties:
There are also additional penalties for paying late of 5% of the tax unpaid at 30 days, six months and 12 months.
It’s also important to note that if you are in a partnership, then all the partners could individually face penalties if a partnership tax return is late.
Is there a system for appeals?
HMRC does have a system in place for you to appeal against a fine imposed, if you have been unable to file your tax return. These might include:
This year, HMRC may also take into account if you have been affected by Coronavirus. However, the following will not count at genuine excuses:
Believe it or not, these are some of the more bizarre excuses that HMRC has – not surprisingly – rejected. We hasten to add, these were not from any of our clients:
Our advice here from the Optimum accountancy team is, if you have yet to file your tax return, do so without delay – you cannot guarantee that your mitigating circumstances will be accepted. And of course, it also means you will have the tax return submission out of the way before Christmas and the New Year.
Our Swindon accountants specialise in tax planning and accountancy for business owners across Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and the South West. Please just get in touch if you have any tax queries, or need assistance with self-assessment.