Be honest if you miss the HMRC deadline

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It’s another year and another HMRC tax return deadline has come and gone. The deadline for online Self Assessment returns passed on January 31 2017. Whilst we, as the leading accountants in Taunton, are always fully prepared for these important dates there can be no denying that it’s a very busy day for the vast majority of us.

Unfortunately very year there are a number of people who seemingly let the day pass by, for they have a high level of confidence in their excuse for either not submitting or being late. In our experience, this confidence is often misplaced.

Each year HMRC releases a list of the “best” excuses they receive for the late or complete lack of tax returns. These are not the best in terms of being the most effective, but rather because they were memorable. In this case, it’s always memorable for the wrong reasons.

The full top ten of such excuses can be seen on the HMRC news section. Some of the rather interesting reasons for no return submitted include –

“My tax return was on my yacht which caught fire”

“My child scribbled all over the tax return so I was not able to send it back”

“The postman does not deliver to my house”

And of course the classic schoolboy excuse;

“The dog ate my tax return and all of the reminders”

Whilst excuses like these are funny and provide some welcome light relief, all as you might expect were rejected as acceptable reasons for missing the deadline. If there’s a genuine problem affecting or delaying your return HMRC is normally understanding. This is so long as you approach them within a reasonable time close to the relevant date and present them with your proposed way of ensuring your return is submitted as soon as possible.

As the top accountants in Taunton, we work with our clients to ensure that self assessment returns are ready to go prior to deadline day. We do, however, know that sometimes there are genuine, out of anyone’s control reasons as to why you might not be ready for submission on or before the day. If this happens to you, we’ll be available to assist in advising HRMC of the situation, and further help you to get the submission resolved in the most amicable way possible.