Tax returns: avoid the rush and file now

Published:  17 December, 2010

UK: Merchants are being urged to put their paperwork in order to avoid a last-minute rush for filing their Self-Assessment tax return online. 

The deadline for filing in returns – and paying any tax owed – is Monday 31 January. Forms can be filed online.

Whether you submit your tax return yourself or you use an accountant, consider filing early – that way you avoid the risk of a penalty for late submission. If HMRC receives your tax return after the 31 January deadline, you could be liable for a £100 penalty.

The Self Assessment Online service is available 24 hours a day for merchants or your accountant to log on and file your return. To avoid the busiest times, use the service between 5pm and 8am, Monday to Friday.

When using an accountant, make sure they have your Unique Taxpayer Reference number (UTR). Using the correct UTR will avoid processing delays and ensure data is captured against the right record. UTR is received when you register for Self-Assessment. 

Details needed will be business accounts for the tax year ended 5 April 2010, for example, spreadsheets of income and expenditure, bank and credit card statements, invoices from customers and expenses receipts. Details of any other income such as interest on bank and building society accounts or income from stocks and shares wi also be required.

If paying into a pension plan, records showing how much you paid during the tax year 2009-10 will be required.

Need help filling in a return? Visit www.hmrc.gov.uk/sa or call the Self-Assessment helpline on 0845 900 0444.

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