As we explained in our article in March this year, new deadlines have been introduced for those who file paper returns.
A new style tax return has also been issued for 2007/08 along with a new HMRC online programme for those who wish to file using the internet.
The main return is much shorter, only six pages instead of ten, but a new ‘Additional Information’ page is included which covers some income and allowances previously in the main return. Married pensioners in particular should note that if one of them was born before 6 April 1935, their claim for age related married couple’s allowance should be made on this additional sheet.
HMRC are keen for as many taxpayers as possible to file online. However you can still file 2007/08 paper returns without incurring any penalties or extra charges if you follow these guidelines:
- The new filing date for paper returns is 31 October 2008; after that date any paper return is deemed to be filed late.
- The date you have to pay any tax due is still 31 January 2009.
- Those who file paper returns after 31 October 2008 will incur a penalty of £100, but if all the tax you owe has been paid by 31 January 2009 the penalty will be reduced to Nil.
- If you file your paper return by 31 October 2008, HMRC guarantees to calculate your tax liability and advise you in time to pay it by 31 January 2009.
- You also have an option, if your income is taxed under PAYE, to have a tax underpayment of less than £2,000 collected through your 2009-10 coding if your paper return is filed by 31 October 2008
What you should do
The message is therefore to gather all the information you need as quickly as possible and submit your tax return before 31 October. If some information is missing but you have a good idea of the amount, then enter it as a provisional figure, put an ‘X’ in box 20 on page 6, and let HMRC know the actual figure as soon as you receive it.
If you think you might like to file online HMRC are offering a step-by-step guide and online demonstrator to help you. There is also more information on Self Assessment on our website.
Contact Name: Jan Tish (Tel: 0844 579 6700 Fax 0844 579 6701)