10.7 million tax returns filed by 31st January deadline

More than 10.7 million people have submitted their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2019 to 2020 tax year by the 31 January deadline.

  • 12.1 million SA returns due
  • 10,743,387 returns received by 31 January – this includes Expected Returns, unsolicited returns and Late Registrations
  • 10,351,387 Expected Returns received by 31 January (85.25% of returns expected)
  • 392,000 unsolicited returns/Late Registrations (3.65%)
  • 1,790,368 taxpayers missed the deadline (14.74%)
  • 10,274,940 returns were filed online (95.64% of total filed)

The remaining 1.8 million whose tax return are now late will not be charged a late filing penalty provided they submit their return online by 28th February 2021.

Those who did not pay their Self Assessment tax bill by 31 January are now incurring interest on the outstanding balance and should pay their bill as soon as possible or arrange a payment plan, before 3 March 2021 to avoid a 5% late payment penalty.

Those who are not yet able to file their tax return should pay an estimated amount as soon as possible, which will minimise any interest and late payment penalty. Self-employed people can use the calculator to help estimate their tax bill.

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

Thank you to the 10.7 million customers who have sent in their tax returns.

We won’t send anyone a late filing penalty if they complete their tax return by 28 February.

We know that many individuals and small businesses are finding it harder to pay this year, due to the pandemic. Anyone who can’t afford to pay their tax bill in full can set up a payment plan, once they’ve filed their return, to spread their tax bill into monthly instalments.

There are several ways to pay a Self Assessment tax bill or an estimated amount.

Anyone who cannot pay their bill in full can apply to spread the cost. You can set up a payment plan, over 12 monthly instalments, if meeting the following requirements:

  • You need to have no:
    • outstanding tax returns
    • other tax debts
    • other HMRC payment plans set up
  • the debt needs to be between £32 and £30,000
  • the payment plan needs to be set up no later than 60 days after the due date for payment – but they should really do it as soon as possible, and certainly before 3 March to avoid a 5% late payment penalty

Those who do not meet these requirements, or who need more than 12 months to pay off their bill, can apply for a payment plan by speaking to one of HMRC’s debt advisers.

Interest accrues on all outstanding balances, including those in payment plans.

Self Assessment customers who are required to make Payments on Account, and know their 2020 to 2021 tax bill is going to be lower than in 2019 to 2020 – for example due to loss of earnings because of COVID-19, can reduce their Payments on Account.

PAYadvice.UK 1/2/2021

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