Delay in issuing Self-Assessment penalty notifications
While 93.68 per cent of the 11.5 million taxpayers who were required to file their Self-Assessment Tax Returns by midnight on 31 January did so on time, 731,186 missed the deadline.
Those who missed the deadline will have to wait longer than in previous years to receive penalty notifications from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).
The notifications of £100 penalties are usually sent in February but may be sent as late as the end of April this year as part of HMRC’s Brexit plans.
However, payment of the penalties will still be due within three months and additional penalties will still apply from beyond the end of April.
The Association of Taxation Technicians (ATT) has expressed concerns that taxpayers may be unable to avoid the prospect of £10 daily penalties if they do not receive notices until late April or even May.
Jon Stride, the co-chair of the ATT’s technical steering group, told Accountancy Daily: “We are concerned that the delay in issuing penalty notices may give taxpayers who haven’t filed their 2017/18 tax returns misplaced confidence that they will either avoid any penalty or, at worst, incur only the fixed £100 penalty.
“In fact, if the £100 penalty notice is issued by HMRC at the end of April 2019, a taxpayer may (by the time the notice hits their doormat) already be incurring additional penalties at the rate of £10 for each day starting from 1 May 2019.
“Those £10 daily penalties will continue until their return is filed online. If that takes until, say, 21 May, that would amount to another £200 of penalty – even if there is no tax outstanding.”