May Day call for tax returns

HMRC is urging those who have not yet completed their 2010/11 tax return to send it online before the end of April

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is urging anyone who has still not filed their 2010/11 tax return to send it online before the end of April, or be charged daily penalties from 1 May.

Anyone whose Self Assessment return is more than three months late will now be charged a further £10 penalty for each day it remains outstanding, up to a maximum of 90 days. This is on top of the £100 late-filing penalty they have already received.

This means people who file their 2010/11 return online on or after 1 May will be liable to daily penalties, as the deadline for these was 31 January. Daily penalties for paper returns began on 1 February, as paper returns were due by the earlier deadline of 31 October.

Looking ahead, further penalties of at least £300 (or 5 per cent of the tax due, if that is more) will be issued for returns that are 6 and 12 months late.

Aren’t sure if you need to complete a return?

Anyone who has received a late-filing penalty, hasn’t yet sent a return, but thinks they don’t need to be in Self Assessment, should call HMRC on tel: 0845 900 0444. If HMRC agrees, the return and any penalty will be cancelled.

You can also download further Self Assessment information from the HMRC website (PDF, 63K).

HMRC’s Stephen Banyard said: “We want the returns and not penalties. So, if you haven’t sent us your 2010/11 return, you need to do one of two things urgently – either send it online by 30 April, or call us if you think you shouldn’t have to complete one.”

You can find out more about tax return deadlines and penalties on the HMRC website.