The tax return deadline looms – don’t delay, act today!

The tax return deadline looms – don’t delay, act today!

Whiting & Partners advise on the HMRC deadlines –  and how you can make sure you complete your tax return on time, in order to avoid penalties and fines.

With the smell of mulled wine in the air, and the happy overheating that only comes from wearing a novelty Christmas jumper, it’s easy to spend the month of December caught up solely in the festive spirit and ignoring the stealthy approach of the tax return filing deadline at the end of the following month.

If you want your tax liability to be collected from your pay during the 2020/21 tax year, the deadline is even closer, as your return would need to be filed by 30 December 2018.

HMRC fines

Of course HMRC do make it ‘tempting’ to file by the deadline  – If you do not file your tax return by 31 January 2019, HMRC will issue you with an automatic penalty of £100.  If you do not pay the tax due by 31 January 2019, there will also be interest and penalties to consider.  HMRC can also then issue penalties for any inaccuracies in your tax return.


There are also fines in place for sending an incorrect tax return or if it contains mistakes and penalties are high for those who attempt to conceal their income in order to pay less tax.

Late Filing Penalty

Miss filing deadline  – £100

30 days late  – 5% of tax due

3 months late  – Daily penalty £10 per day for up to 90 days (max £900)

6 months late – 5% of tax due or £300, if greater

12 months late – 5% or £300 if greater

As such, while it is tempting to delay thinking about your tax return until Christmas is over, it is really best to not delay, and give yourself enough time to pull together all the information required to complete your tax return.

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