There are reports that some people who requested a new User ID (or password reset) for online filing after 21/01/14 may have an extension until 15/02/14. At least one hadn't received information requested on 17/01/14 by the 31/01/14 deadline.

For whom the tax warning tolls

Inland Revenue office © Matt Salusbury

Offices of the Inland Revenue (precursor to HMRC) in Aldwych

AWOOGA! Awooga! Parp! Parp! Parp! (attempts to simulate in words the sound of nuclear power station evacuation alarm or "battle stations" klaxon). That's the Freelance tax return deadline countdown siren sounding.

Yes, you have really not much more than a month as of the time you are likely to be reading this to fill in and send your tax return for tax year 2012-2013 by 31 January 2014 or face hefty fines.

It sounds like a long time, but "stuff to do" does tend to get in the way, especially for those of you who can still afford to celebrate Christmas, a time with all those pesky Bank Holidays in which Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) tax return helpline and other people from whom you need evidence of money aren't answering the phone. (Although you can, if you wish, take the opportunity to spend Christmas Day filling and sending in your tax return, as around 200 people do each time Christmas Day comes round, according to data from HMRC a few years ago.)

And getting through to the HMRC helpline come mid-January will get progressively more impossible. The time to start on your tax return if you haven't already is now. You've already missed the deadline for filing a paper tax return, and if you are planning to file a tax return online for the first time, you'll need to sign up at https://online.hmrc.gov.uk/home and get a "Government Gateway" user ID, with an activation code that takes up to seven working days to come by post.

Last modified: 03 DEc 2013 - © 2013 contributors
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