What did you do on Christmas Day?
Did you, like most of us, sit down to a family meal and idle away the day with lots of people you spend the rest of the year trying to avoid, or did you do something a little more constructive? Well, ask any accountant and they’ll tell you that many self-employed people actually use their scarce time off trying to put their affairs in order; after all, it’s probably about the only time they’ll ever really get. So how many people are we talking about here then? Well, according to HMRC we’re actually looking at around 23,000 people. That’s the figure that HM Revenues and Customs believe will have spent their Christmas Day completing their self-assessment.
So why are people prepared to make such a sacrifice when they should be enjoying quality time with their nearest and dearest?
Well, the reason is simple. The self-assessment tax deadline is looming. According to HMRC there are around 9 million self-employed professionals, business partners, pensioners with an income of £100,000 or more and people with a pre-tax investment income of £10,000 or more who are required to submit a tax return ahead of the 31st January 2015 deadline.
But if the deadline is still a month away, why are people in such a rush to get their affairs sorted out? Well, the reason is that in order to complete their self-assessment returns, taxpayers will need to give themselves sufficient time to gather together documents like dividend vouchers, interest statements and Forms P60 and P11D from employment. The consequences for missing the deadline or filing incomplete or incorrect figures can be costly, as HMRC will apply penalty charges, as well as interest and surcharges on any tax owed. No matter how small the balance may be, it is important to include all sources of income and gains.
One of the most useful aspects of filing your self-assessment return online is that you can alter your return up until the 31st January deadline. It’s also possible to part-save your return and come back to it if, for instance, you need to find further information or if you don’t have enough time to complete it in one go. However, not all business finances are simple, or are as suited to online self-assessment: some business finances are extremely complicated affairs. In these cases the wisest course of action is to seek advice from an accountant, like Steven Glicher, to help you prepare or check your tax return.
Steven Glicher Accountants use HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) approved software to help you complete and file your tax returns on time and for the right amount.
We can analyse your self-assessment return to see if any tax savings can be made and we can also review the form to see if there are any anomalies that need to be addressed before the return is submitted. For further information aboutand late payment penalties, contact Steven Glicher accountants on 0161 405 8007.