Taxpayers once again broke records in 2020, with over 11.1 million customers filing their self-assessments online by the 31st January deadline. Did you file on time or have you missed the deadline?
You were required to file a self-assessment tax return (SATR) for the 2018/19 tax year if:
- You are self-employed and earned over £1,000 in the tax year
- You made over £1,000 from property income in the tax year
- You are a higher-rate taxpayer
- You are the Director or secondary shareholder of a limited company
- You receive foreign income even if you don’t usually live in the UK
- You have any form of untaxed income, such as capital gains or losses
- You have specific savings or investments
Visit the government’s website for a full list of categories. You can also fill in a short questionnaire if you’re unsure whether you need to file a SATR.
11.7 million individuals were required to submit their self-assessment by 31st January – more than 700,000 filed on deadline day
Despite many leaving their returns to the last minute, the number of taxpayers successfully meeting the deadline this year has increased to nearly 95%. Most taxpayers filing on 31st January did so between 16:00 and 17:00, but approximately 27,000 taxpayers waited until the final hour.
In total, 958,296 did not submit their self-assessment on time.
There is usually an instant £100 penalty if you fail to file your self-assessment by 11:59:59 on 31st January, with further sanctions for failing to pay the tax you owe.
Penalties for failing to file self-assessments and pay personal tax liabilities:
- 30 days late in paying tax liability: 5% penalty applicable on the tax due
- Three months late-filing: £10 per day penalty on top of the initial £100 penalty
- After six months, additional penalties of 5% of the tax due or £300, whichever is greater
- After 12 months, another 5% or £300 penalty is applicable
There are some reasonable excuses for not filing on time, which you could use to try and appeal your late filing penalty. These include a death in the family or a hospital visit affecting your ability to file.
On the other end of the spectrum, HMRC issues a list each year of ridiculous excuses that have been heard for not filing on time. Outrageous explanations in the past have included ‘I’m too cold to type’ and ‘I was up on a mountain in Wales, and I couldn’t log on’.
Do I need to file a self-assessment if I work through an umbrella company?
Because umbrella companies legally deduct all of your income tax and National Insurance at source, you do not need to file a self-assessment. Umbrella contractors such as those using Churchill Knight Umbrella will only need to submit a self-assessment if they earn a secondary income, such as property income or untaxed income from a side project.
If you are working through an umbrella company and are earning secondary income, we can help you file your self-assessment. Check with us if you needed to complete one for the 2018/19 tax year.
Get support with your self-assessment
If you haven’t yet filed your self-assessment for the 2018/19 tax year, enlist the support of our expert personal tax accountants. The Personal Tax Team has completed over 20,000 self-assessments since 1998. They help individuals in various circumstances, including limited company directors, landlords, and even umbrella company contractors with secondary untaxed income.