With penalties, surcharges and interest looming for the millions of us
struggling to submit our 2000/01 tax returns before the 31st January
deadline, now is a good time to look at what the Inland Revenue
actually mean by "deadline".
Strictly, Self Assessment tax returns
for 2000/01 that were issued before 1st November 2001, must be
received by your tax office by 31st January 2002 and all tax due for
the year must have been paid by that date. If the Tax Return is late
there is an automatic penalty of up to £100, and if the tax is paid
late interest is currently charged at 6.50 % per annum (calculated
However, the kind-hearted people at
the Inland Revenue have again extended the deadline this year. Any tax
return found in an Inland Revenue office letterbox when they open on
Saturday 2nd February 2002 will be treated as meeting the deadline.
However, in strictness, returns received, or assumed to have been
received, on 1st February 2002 are late. Consequently, the deadline
for the Inland Revenue to raise an enquiry is extended from 31st
January 2003 to 30th April 2003.
As any tax you owe still has to be
paid by 31st of January, don't wait for the Inland Revenue to confirm
the amount due: it can take months for them to "process" the
late rush of tax returns. Sending a cheque to the Inspector of Taxes
with your Tax Return is not good enough; the payment has to reach the
Collector of Taxes by the deadline. However, you can pay at a Post
Office, by Bank Giro or by posting a cheque. Remember to quote your
unique taxpayer reference. You can also pay by Internet
using a debit card or over the telephone (0845 305 1000) using a debit
card. The Collector of Taxes does not accept credit cards!
There are some lucky people who do not
have to meet the 31st January deadline: those who were issued with a
Tax Return after 31st October 2001. For these lucky few, the deadlines
for submitting the tax return are:
The tax due has to be paid within a
month of receiving the Inland Revenue's "Self Assessment"
tax calculation or within the three month period if you work out the
There is always the option of
submitting your Tax Return online, if your affairs are of a basic
nature to click
here to go to our online tax return service or if you think your
affairs may be of a more complex nature click
here to go establish which of our services would best suit your
needs. But do hurry time is getting short to beat the deadline for
help contact i.e.taxguard on 0800 9759010.
However you do it, make sure that you
do get your Tax Return in, even if it is a bit late. The Inland
Revenue want it and will not rest until they get it!