Nearly a Million Missed Self-Assessment Tax Deadline
Close to a million people missed HMRC’s January 31st deadline for submitting self-assessment returns for the 2018/19 tax year.
More than 11 million British taxpayers submitted self-assessment returns this year, with a large majority being filed online, but more than 950,000 people apparently let the deadline come and go without getting their details in.
Everyone who missed the deadline will now find themselves in line for a £100 fine, which they’ll need to pay unless they can convince HMRC that there were genuine reasons why they couldn’t get their return submitted on time.
“The department will treat those with genuine excuses leniently, as it focuses penalties on those who persistently fail to complete their tax returns and deliberate tax evaders. The excuse must be genuine and HMRC may ask for evidence,” explained Angela MacDonald, HMRC’s director general for customer services.
Anyone who hasn’t yet sent their self-assessment return to HMRC but ought to have done so is being urged to get their details sent in as quickly as possible to avoid incurring any further fines beyond the £100 bill they can expect to receive at some point soon.
“I’d like to thank everyone who filed and paid on time, but anyone yet to file or pay should contact HMRC straight away because we are here to help,” said Ms MacDonald.
A significant number of people left it until almost the last minute to submit their returns this year, with roughly 700,000 returns sent in less than 24 hours before HMRC’s deadline was due to pass.
As many as 26,500 people even left the process of finalising and submitting their returns until less than an hour before the 11.59pm cut off point on January 31st.
The figure of 11.1 million as a total number of people who submitted self-assessment returns represents an unprecedented high level in that regard, with the number of filings done online this year having “soared to more than 10.4 million,” according to HMRC’s data.
“It’s great to see that the majority of customers have submitted and paid their tax returns before 31 January,” said Ms MacDonald.
“While few people enjoy the process it’s good to get it out the way and know you have contributed towards our vital public services.”