Late filing penalties

HMRC penalty notices are on their way!

Did you see our blog on March 1st? We discussed how HMRC was delaying sending out penalties for self-assessment late payers – possibly until the end of April. The reason given was ‘pressures of Brexit’. It now seems that HMRC have caught up and the penalty notices are already starting to land.

If you missed the January 31st deadline for filing your self-assessment for year 2017/18, then you’ll have to pay a statutory fine. HMRC made it clear that, although your late penalty notice would be delayed, you wouldn’t get away without paying the consequential fines. These come into two stages –

1. £100 for missing the January 31st deadline
2. £10 a day, if you still haven’t submitted your self-assessment by April 30th

When HMRC made their initial announcement about late notices, the Association of Tax Technicians (ATT) raised two specific concerns about the importance of sending out the £100 penalty notices in good time. These notices serve to
(a) give people a vital ‘nudge’ about submitting their return.
(b) remind people about the £10 per day penalty that starts on May 1st

ATT’s main worry was that, if the notices were delayed until late April, late submitters would find themselves paying the daily fine with little or no warning.
Jon Stride is co-chair of the ATT’s technical steering group. He is relieved that the delay wasn’t as long as HMRC had at first anticipated.

‘The ATT is pleased that HMRC has now started to issue penalty notices and have not delayed the exercise to the end of April, which was originally a possibility. However, it will take HMRC until 12 April 2019 to issue all the penalty letters. This gives taxpayers a little over two weeks to submit their return before the daily penalty regime commences.

Urgent action required

Are you still late in submitting your 2017/18 self-assessment?

If the answer is ‘yes’ – you must do so immediately. Already, you’ll be paying the initial £100 penalty. But, and it’s a big ‘but’ – with less than a week left before the end of April deadline, you’re in grave danger of paying the daily £10-a-day fine. As a one-off, £10 might not seem excessive, but imagine how that will build up after just a week or so!

Self-assessment is one of our specialist areas of expertise. If you’re worried about your own situation, call us today. With our fast efficient and affordable service, we’ll help get you back on track.

If this issue, or any other relating to business or personal finances or taxation, is causing you concern and you need expert advice, do get in touch.

We’re here to help.

Disclaimer

This legal information is not the same as legal advice and you may not rely on our post as a recommendation of any particular legal understanding. Please, consult an attorney if you’d like to get advice on your interpretation of this article.

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