Tax returns: OMG… it’s January!

Tax returns: OMG… it’s January!

Friday, 05 January 2018

With the festivities over we can relax and plan ahead for 2018.  But there’s something in the back of your mind… something important…. what is it? Then the reality hits… OMG it’s January and my tax return isn’t done!

So if that lightbulb moment has just happened to you read on, as this is a timely reminder of the cost of ignoring the return… gym membership can wait until February!

In 2017 approximately 900,000 people were late in submitting their returns, giving HM Revenue & Customs potentially a bonus of £90 million and recent figures suggest many returns for 2016/17 remain outstanding. Actual numbers are currently imprecise but I was interested to read recently that over 10,000 taxpayers filed their tax returns over Christmas Day and Boxing Day with special mention to the dedicated 92 who filed their returns between 11pm and midnight on Christmas Eve!

So what should you do? First and foremost, if you need to submit a tax return for 2016/17, the deadline is 31 January.  Miss that and you will receive an automatic penalty of £100!  Don’t try filling in the old paper copy, the deadline for submitting that was 31 October 2017, so now there is no option but to register with HMRC and submit your return online. Good luck with that!

Secondly, don’t bury your head in the sand. Forgive the winter metaphor but post 31 January the £100 penalty quickly ‘snowballs‘.

  • If your return is 3 months late, there is a daily penalty of £10 per day for up to 90 days (max £900).
  • 6 months late, a further penalty of 5% of the tax due or £300, if greater.
  • 12 months late, a further penalty of 5% of the tax due or £300, if greater. 

In addition, you could be facing penalties and interest for the late payment of any tax due.

After you have finished wincing, what more motivation do you need? Time is ticking and when the clock hits midnight on 31 January you have just said goodbye to £100…

Any registration with HMRC now has the potential for time delays which can only increase the risk of a penalty… Don’t despair we can help, our tax team can utilise our HMRC agent on line portal to get this done for you… so what are you waiting for?

Jordan Brown

For more information on how we can help, please speak Jordan or to your usual Larking Gowen contact.

Call 0330 024 0888 or email


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