29 January

Self-Assessment 2019-20 Deadline extended until February 28th – But Not Tax Owed

HMRC to waive SA late filing penalties for one month

On the 25th of January, HMRC announced that those who complete their 2019/20 Self-assessment return before the 28th of February will not be fined the usual £100, thereby extending the January 31st deadline. However, any tax owing and not paid to HMRC by the 1st of February will still incur interest at 2.6%. Penalties on tax owing will begin as normal on the 2nd March. What this means is that HMRC's extension of the deadline to February 28th is only relevant to those who owe little or no tax, as the interest of 2.6% will still be charged on taxes from 2019/20, remaining unpaid on the 1st of February.

HMRC’s Chief Executive, Jim Harra

We want to encourage as many people as possible to file their returns on time, so we can calculate their tax bill and help them if they can’t pay it straight away. But we recognize the immense pressure that many people are facing in these unprecedented times and it has become increasingly clear that some people will not be able to file their return by 31 January.

Not charging late filing penalties for late online tax returns submitted in February will give them the breathing space they need to complete and file their returns, without worrying about receiving a penalty.

Time to Pay arrangement

Taxpayers who cannot afford to pay their tax bill on time can apply online to spread their bill over up to 12 months. But they will need to file their 2019 to 2020 tax return before setting up a time to pay arrangement, so HMRC is encouraging everyone to do this as soon as possible. Time to Pay arrangement by calling the Self Assessment Payment Helpline on 0300 200 3822.

Self-Assessment customers warned about scammers posing as HMRC

Many scams target customers to inform them of a fake ‘tax rebate’ or ‘tax refund’ they are due. The imposters use language intended to convince them to hand over personal information, including bank details, in order to claim the ‘refund’. Criminals will use this information to access customers’ bank accounts, trick them into paying fictitious tax bills, or sell their personal information to other criminals.

HMRC’s Interim Director General for Customer Services, Karl Khan

We know that criminals take advantage of the Self Assessment deadline to panic customers into sharing their personal or financial details and even paying bogus ‘tax due’.

If someone calls, emails, or texts claiming to be from HMRC, offering financial help, or asking for money, it might be a scam. Please take a moment to think before parting with any private information or money.

Customers can report suspicious activity to HMRC at phishing@hmrc.gov.uk or by sending a text to 60599. They can also report phone scams online on GOV.UK.

*Our best advice is to get your Self-assessment return completed before 31st January and make a tax payment to avoid any additional costs for taxes owed.

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