Get Your Personal Tax Return in on Time

Yes, the deadline is almost upon us. If your on-line tax return and payment doesn't arrive at HMRC by January 31st, the initial penalty of £100 will be levied. Greater amounts will soon accrue and could add up to £1,300 over six months. And that doesn't include the interest that will be added to the tax due. Clearly it makes sense to submit and pay on time.

Get Ready - and Go!

Hopefully, you are already registered with HMRC for on-line self- assessment. If not, get to it right away at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/sa/. It will take a few days to receive the activation code you need to access your tax return.

Collect together all the information you need to complete your return, such as:

  • P60 or P45 (Part 1A)
  • P11D or equivalent information from an employer
  • Profit or loss accounts
  • Records of business receipts and business expenses
  • Letters received from the Department for Work and Pensions
  • Notices of tax coding for 2010-11 and 2011-12
  • Details of pension contributions or receipts
  • Details of gift aid payments to charities

You are now ready to start your submission, unless you need professional help with anything unusual that happened during that tax year. In that case, we can help you.

When you click on submit your tax return, you will be guided through the HMRC software on the site. You don't have to do it in one sitting. If you need to leave it, the software will save your data until you log on again.

Pay Attention to Accuracy

When you submit on-line, make sure you haven't made any mistakes before clicking that submit button. Transposing numbers, such as 150 to 510, could make a significant difference to your tax liability. If you have a paper copy of the return from the revenue, it might help to fill that in so you can copy it on-line. If you do find an error after your return has been submitted, the revenue will allow you to resubmit an amended return, but only until January 31st.

Getting someone else to help you check it also makes good sense. An obvious choice for this, or to help in any way you want with the submission, would be your outsourced bookkeepers. Many of them, including Office Assistants, offer a far wider range of services than just keeping the books for you.

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