Late filing of Self Assessment tax returns
Taxpayers that have not yet filed their 2015-16 Self Assessment returns will have already been charged an automatic £100 penalty for late submission. The penalty applied from 1 February 2017, even if no tax was due or the tax due was paid on time.
However, taxpayers who were meant to file online by 31 January 2017, and have still not filed their 2015-16 return, are reminded that they will face far greater penalties. A daily penalty of £10 per day, up to a maximum of £900 (90 days) is being charged from 1 May 2017.
Further penalties then apply if the return is still outstanding for more than 6 months after the 31 January 2017 filing deadline. From 1 August 2017, taxpayers will be charged the greater of £300 or 5% of the tax due. If the return is outstanding one year after the filing deadline, further penalties will be charged from 1 February 2018.
HMRC has been taking a more pragmatic approach to penalties in respect of taxpayers that file a late return. However, this only applies to those that have a reasonable excuse for filing a Self Assessment return late and file as soon as practically possible.
Taxpayers who have not yet filed their 2012-13 Self Assessment returns online faced a minimum daily penalty of £10 totalling £900 for the three months from 1 May 2014. The next set of penalties began on 1 August and taxpayers will be charged the greater of £300 or 5% of the tax due. If the return continues to remain outstanding, further higher penalties will be charged when the return is twelve months late.
These penalties are on top of the £100 automatic late penalties which have already been sent to taxpayers who missed the 31 January 2014 deadline.
The penalty regime for the late submission of Self Assessment returns has the following main elements:
- From 1 day late: An automatic £100 late penalty for late submission of a tax return even if taxpayers had no tax to pay or had paid any tax due on time.
- From 3 months late: taxpayers will be charged an automatic daily penalty of £10 per day up to a £900 maximum.
- From 6 months late: taxpayers will be charged additional penalties which are the greater of 5% of tax due or £300.
- Over 12 months late: there are additional penalties based on greater of 5% of tax due or £300. In serious cases this penalty may be increased up to 100% of tax due.