Late tax returns will incur a £10 penalty for every day they remain outstanding after May 1 following the introduction of new charges introduced by HMRC earlier this year.
The changes meant those filing paper returns, who missed the October deadline, started paying daily fines from February 1. Those filing online had until January 31 to send in their 2010/11 return and avoid any penalties at all and will incur the additional daily fee from May 1 if they still haven’t completed the process.
Warned Ton Roseff, senior tax manager at chartered accountants Saffery Champness in Harrogate:
Anyone whose Self Assessment return is more than three months late will be charged a £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.
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.
Anyone who has received a late-filing penalty but still hasn’t submitted a return should take action now, whether this be obtaining advice on the preparation and submission of the necessary returns or contacting HMRC to discuss what steps should be taken..
In some cases no return may be due and late filing penalties received can be mitigated, but it is still necessary to contact HMRC to agree this position.
The new penalties for late Self Assessment returns are:
- an initial £100 fixed penalty, which will now apply even if there is no tax to pay, or if the tax due is paid on time;
- after 3 months, additional daily penalties of £10 per day, up to a maximum of £900;
- after 6 months, a further penalty of 5% of the tax due or £300, whichever is greater; and
- after 12 months, another 5% or £300 charge, whichever is greater.
- There are also additional new penalties for paying late of 5% of the tax unpaid at: 30 days; 6 months; and 12 months.