HMRC Push Back The Self Assessment Penalty

The government made a big announcement in regards to the Self Assessment tax return.

Self Assessment Customers will not receive a late filing penalty if they did not file their tax return on time.

This will provide massive relief for customers who were struggling to make ends meet, and ensure the payment to HMRC was made on time to avoid this penalty.

No Penalty For Filing Late

Normally Self Assessment customers would be subject to a penalty if they submitted their online tax return late. The original deadline for this was the 31st January 2021.

That date is still the one which HMRC are encouraging customers to file by, as they are obliged to pay by January 31st 2021. Interest will still begin accumulating from 1st February onwards and be applied to any account which has an outstanding payment.

However, HMRC announced a pause on the late-filing penalty, saying that customers would not face the penalty if they filed online by 28th February 2021.

This gives customers an extra month to get their account in order, before they are hit with a late-filing penalty.

Other Payment Alternatives

There are other alternatives for taxpayers who can’t afford to pay their tax bill. 

Providing the customer has submitted their 19-20 tax return, they have the option to set up a payment plan, where the bill is spread out across 12 months.

Of course, it’s important to set this up as soon as possible, and it’s worth noting that any payment over £30,000 won’t be eligible for a payment plan such as this. You would need to contact HMRC directly for a Time to Pay arrangement over the phone.

Get In Touch With HMRC

This announcement comes after HMRC revealed they were keeping a close eye on the situation. Figures have shown that customers and agents are way behind ‘filing on time’ compared to previous years.

If you’re trying to contact HMRC in the run up to the deadline you can get in touch via their webchat, Twitter or via the Self Assessment helpline. 

The phone line and webchat will be open on the final days of January, even though they fall on a weekend.


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