HMRC issues tax return reminder

Monday 27 October 2014

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is reminding all self employed professionals, sole traders and limited companies that the deadline is coming up for self assessment (SA) tax return for 2013/14 in paper form.

Those who are choosing to submit their SA tax return in this way will need to have sent it back to HMRC by October 31st or will face a £100 penalty.

This penalty can be issued even if there is no tax to pay or the actual tax is received on time, should the person still file the actual return late.

The more time that is left before the SA tax return is sent in, the higher the penalty could be because the cost rises after three, six and 12 months.

People who intend to fill in their tax returns online need not worry about this deadline as they have until January 31st 2015 to file it.

Those who opt to file their SA in this way will have their tax calculated automatically and their return will be processed faster.

Regardless of the way that people choose to submit their tax returns, they must have paid their taxes by January 31st.

SA is an area that, although required, often proves very tricky and time consuming for those that have to fill in tax returns.

Matt Fryer, senior compliance manager for Brookson, said: "SA tax returns are very extensive and designed to ensure all relevant information and circumstances are recorded. It is a requirement for self employed professionals and getting it done on time is vital. However, it has long proved to be a confusing area for people who choose to work in this way. Therefore, if there are any areas that cause confusion then it is worthwhile getting in touch with a contractor accountant who can complete your tax return correctly for you."

There is also plenty of help and advice published on the GOV.UK website to ensure people get their tax returns done to the standard that is needed.

Before a tax return can be sent in, professionals must register to do so. If they need to send one in for the year 2013/14 but have not yet registered then they will face a penalty as the registration deadline has already passed.

Nevertheless, it is a legal requirement for people to send in their SA if they are a self-employed sole trader, a partner in a business or a company director.

HMRC says that it is acceptable for a tax return to be filed by a professional, such as a contractor accountant.

If people do miss the deadline for sending in a paper tax return, HMRC advises that they do it online instead so as to avoid facing a penalty.

When it comes to paying the tax, there are a number of ways that professionals can send it to HMRC, including through internet banking and setting up a direct debit.

Professionals can also make corrections to their tax returns online by logging into their HMRC online account.

By Victoria McDonnell

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