The official deadline for filing a Self Assessment tax return for 2020-2021 without incurring a late filing penalty is 31 January 2022. However, for the second year running, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is waiving late filing and late payment penalties for Self Assessment taxpayers for one month – giving them extra time, if required to complete their 2021 tax return and pay any tax due.
HMRC states that it recognises the pressure faced this year by Self Assessment taxpayers and their agents. COVID-19 is affecting the capacity of some agents and taxpayers to meet their obligations in time for the 31 January deadline. The penalty waivers give taxpayers who need it more time to complete and file their return online and pay the tax due without worrying about receiving a penalty.
The deadline to file and pay remains 31 January 2022. The penalty waivers will mean that:
Whilst there are penalty waivers in place, it should be noted that interest will be payable from 1 February, as usual, until the tax liability is paid, so it is still better to pay on time if possible.
HMRC have encouraged as many people as possible to file as early as they can and noted that there is still an obligation to pay any tax owed by 31 January 2022. If taxpayers do not pay the tax owed on time, interest will be applied from 1 February 2022. As a result, while you may have been unable to file a tax return on time, you should still make a payment if you can. You can also apply to pay your tax bill over the course of the next 12 months if you cannot afford to pay it all at once. However, you must have filed a tax return to set up a time to pay arrangement.
If you wish to avoid difficulties associated with late filing and payment, we recommend submitting your return early in future. There are many benefits to filing your return early, including that you can seek proper tax planning advice and take advantage of wealth management strategies. Our experienced tax advisors can help. Read our article here.
Laura Brown is a tax specialist and Director of Murray Beith Murray's Tax group. If this article has raised any questions or you would like to discuss your tax affairs then please complete our contact form or call 0131 225 1200.
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