[Updated February 2020] If you missed the deadline to submit your self-assessment tax return, the first thing to know is that you are now into the penalty stage. HMRC applies an automatic £100 penalty to those who are even 1 day late (the deadline was 11.59pm on 31st January) and further penalties are added if you take even longer to comply. It’s worse, of course, if you also haven’t paid any tax owed as you’ll then owe interest too, so our advice is to pay as much as you can before 29th February, so you’ll reduce any element of interest. However, if there is a genuine reason why you were late with your return, and it fits certain criteria, you have the option to appeal …
Circumstances that are taken into account by HMRC when considering appeals include:
- if a close relative or partner died shortly before the tax return or payment deadline;
- if you had to stay in hospital unexpectedly;
- if you had a life-threatening or serious illness;
- if your computer or software failed at the time you were preparing your online return;
- if HMRC’s online services were disrupted;
- if you were prevented from filing your return or paying your tax because of a fire, flood or theft;
- if there were unexpected postal delays;
- and occasionally other reasons which, if genuine, HMRC may deem to be relevant.
Excuses that aren’t usually accepted by HMRC include:
- you didn’t receive a reminder from HMRC;
- you found HMRC’s online system too difficult to use;
- your cheque bounced or payment failed due to you having insufficient funds;
- a 3rd party failed to submit your return or tax on your behalf.
Taxfile are here to help
So, if your tax return is late, you owe HMRC tax or are owed a refund by them, come and see us in February, here at Taxfile in South London. We’ll help to sort it all out for you with the minimum of fuss, at a very competitive price. Come in as early in the month as you can and we’ll help you to sort things out — for the best possible outcome. We know the rules and liaise with HMRC every single day on behalf of our clients, so if we can help convince HMRC to reduce or completely remove any penalty you may be facing, we will do so, so long as your circumstances fit the relevant HMRC criteria. February is the best time to come in for this as you can only appeal within 30 days of the date of any penalty notice you receive, so the earlier the better – give us a call on 0208 761 8000. Alternatively, book an appointment with one of our expert tax advisors or contact us here to chat things over, without obligation.