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Penalties for Late Tax Returns and Payments

Newsletter issue - October 2009.

Late Tax Returns: Your personal tax return for the year to 5 April 2008 should have been submitted to the Tax Office by 31 January 2009 at the very latest. Tax returns submitted on paper for that year were due in by 31 October 2008. These deadlines may be later if the 2007/08 tax year was the first year for which you needed to submit a tax return, and you didn’t receive the tax return form until after 31 July 2008.

The Taxman does not have much patience when it comes to late delivery of tax returns and has instructed his computer to send out £100 penalties every six months. The first penalty would have been issued in February 2009 and the second one in August 2009. If the Taxman gets really cross he will ask the Tax Tribunal to issue daily penalties of up to £60 per day, until you do deliver a complete tax return!

If you have paid all the income and capital gains tax you owed for 2007/08 by 31 January 2009, or you are due a tax repayment for that year, the £100 penalties can be reduced to nil. However, you do have to appeal against the £100 penalty notices to claim the reduction.

Late Payments: If you have not paid all the tax you owe for 2007/08 you will have been issued with a 5% surcharge in February and another 5% surcharge in August, plus interest will be mounting up at 2.5% on the amount owing. This interest rate on late tax increased to 3% from 29 September 2009. Where you have agreed a time to pay plan with the Tax Office, and are paying the instalments due under than plan on time, the 5% surcharges should not have been raised. If this is the case the Tax Office should be contacted as soon as possible to get the 5% surcharge cancelled.

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