The deadline for paper tax returns for the UK tax year (October 31st) has now passed but, if you plan on filing online, you are given longer to get your return to the Inland Revenue. What are the deadlines for online returns, what do you need to do and what are the penalties if you file late?
HMRC Deadlines for the Submission of Online Tax Returns
The deadline for submitting a tax return for self assessment online for most people is the 31st January (by midnight). In some circumstances, however, you may be given an extended deadline. If, for example, HMRC sent your notification to file after the 31st October, then you are given an extra three months after the date of this notice.
What is the Deadline for Tax Payments?
The 31st of January is also the deadline for payments for the tax year (for both paper and online filing). So, if you submit your self assessment form on the 31st, you also need to pay on that date. In some cases, according to your income and tax due, you may simply have a one-off payment at this point. In others, you may need to make a balancing payment and the first of any applicable payments on account. This will be outlined on the calculation made for you on your tax return.
How to Apply to File for Self Assessment Online
First time users cannot simply go to the HMRC website and submit tax returns. They need to apply for an activation code first to access the system via password and user ID. This is managed by post and can take a week to arrive once you’ve applied. The deadline given to make sure you can proceed in time to meet the deadline is the 21st January.
If you have filed online before, then your existing codes can be used. If you are a first time user who has already requested and received an activation code, then you need to make sure that this is still valid. Codes have to be used within 28 days of the dated letter or they will expire.
What are the Penalties for Filing a Tax Return Late?
The current late filing deadline is £100. If, however, you file a SA100 (personal return) or a SA800 (Trust and Estate Tax return) late, but you pay the tax that you owe by the 31st January, then the penalty will generally be waived. In some circumstances, HMRC also allow “reasonable excuses” to be taken into consideration.
So, for example, if you lost key documentation due to theft, fire or flood that you cannot replace in time to file your return, then the penalty fee may be waived. This may also apply to a life-threatening illness, the death of a partner or an inability to file online because the website didn’t work.
It is recommended that you contact your local tax office as soon as you know you’re going to miss the deadline to discuss your case rather than waiting until you are given a penalty notice. You may also need to provide proof to back up your case to have the fee waived. Get more information here http://www.duquelaw.com/newport-beach-personal-injury/.