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Deadline to appeal late filing penalties extended till 31st March

Deadline to appeal late filing penalties extended till 31st March

Contractor accountants may want to inform their clients that HMRC has extended the final deadline for appealing against self-assessment late filing penalties until the 31st of March.

Under normal circumstances, recipients of penalty notices are only allowed a 30 day window in which to appeal, but this year the Revenue has decided to make an exception and grant the extension because it believes its phone lines are going to be unusually busy over the next few weeks.

As well as appealing by phone, taxpayers can lodge an appeal against their penalty in writing, again before the March 31st deadline. If the taxpayer can show a reason why he should not be included in the income tax self-assessment system, the Revenue will cancel the fine.

HMRC last week once again stressed the importance of submitting tax returns on time. A spokesman for the department explained that the longer the delay, the higher the penalty.

Taxpayers who failed to submit by the 2nd of February will receive an automatic £100 penalty. If the Revenue is still waiting for the return after three months, an additional penalty of £10 a day will be imposed – up to a maximum of 90 days. After six months, the taxpayer will face another penalty and once a return is 12 months overdue, yet another fine will be levied.

Anyone who believes they have received a penalty notice in error may want to contact an accountant for advice.

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Image: Tax Bill by Images_of_Money

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