Self Assessment deadline reminder

News article

HM Revenue and Customs is reminding Self Assessment customers to complete and pay their 2019-20 tax return

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has announced that Self Assessment customers will not receive a penalty for filing their 2019-20 tax return late, as long as they file online by Sunday 28 February 2021.

HMRC has announced that Self Assessment taxpayers will not be charged the 5% late payment penalty if they pay their tax or set up a payment plan by 1 April 2021. Customers can pay online, through their bank, or by post before they file. See more help for Self Assessment taxpayers.

Each year, around 11 million customers complete a Self Assessment tax return. Customers can complete their 2019-20 tax return at any time up to the deadline but HMRC recommends completing it early to allow customers time to pay their tax bill or set up a payment plan.

The majority of Self Assessment customers choose to complete their tax return online, which provides an immediate calculation of any tax owed.

Who needs to complete a Self Assessment tax return?

Customers must complete a Self Assessment return if they:

  • have earned more than £2,500 from renting out property
  • have received, or their partner has received, Child Benefit and either of them had an annual income of more than £50,000
  • have received more than £2,500 in other untaxed income, for example from tips or commission
  • are a self-employed sole trader whose annual turnover is over £1,000
  • are an employee claiming expenses in excess of £2,500
  • have an annual income of over £100,000
  • have earned income from abroad that they need to pay tax on

Spread the cost with monthly payment plans

Once Self Assessment customers have completed their 2019-20 tax return, and know how much tax is owed, they can set up their own payment plan to help spread the cost of their tax liabilities, up to the value of £30,000.

They can use the self-serve Time to Pay facility to set up monthly direct debits and this can all be done online so there is no need to phone HMRC. See Self Assessment - pay in instalments.

Casual income

Customers can also check on whether they need to declare, or possibly pay tax on any ‘casual’ income they receive. The new HMRC interactive guidance is quick and easy to use and explains what individuals need to do if they receive non-PAYE income from:

  • selling things, for example at car boot sales or auctions, or online
  • doing casual jobs such as gardening, food delivery or babysitting
  • charging other people for using your equipment or tools
  • renting out property or part of their home, including for holidays (for example, through an agency or online)

Be aware of potential scams

Be aware of copycat HMRC websites and phishing scams. Always type in the full online address www.gov.uk/hmrc to get the correct link for filing your Self Assessment return online securely and free of charge.

And be alert if someone calls, emails or texts claiming to be from HMRC, saying that you can claim financial help, are due a tax refund or owe tax. It might be a scam. See how to a recognise genuine HMRC contact and examples of HMRC related phishing emails, suspicious phone calls and texts.

Further information

The deadline to complete online Self Assessment tax returns for 2019-20 is 31 January 2021. However HMRC will not penalise those who cannot file by this date as long as they do so by 28 February 2021. You must pay your Self Assessment tax bill by 31 January 2021.

If you are completing a tax return for the first time, you will need to register for Self Assessment.

If your Self Assessment debts are over £30,000, or you need longer than 12 months to pay your debt in full, you may still be able to set up a Time to Pay arrangement by calling the HMRC Self Assessment Payment Helpline on 0300 200 3822.

Customers using self-serve Time to Pay will be required to pay any interest on the tax owed. Interest will be applied to any outstanding balance from 1 February 2021.

Limited company directors who are currently in Self Assessment but no longer meet any other criteria to remain in scope, can either:

  • complete their tax return by the deadline. HMRC will update their record and they won’t be issued a notice to file for the following year
  • call HMRC, which can agree to withdraw the notice, if the customer no longer satisfies the criteria for this year

From 6 April 2020 the process for Capital Gains Tax on UK residential property sold since 6 April 2020 has changed. It must now be declared and paid within 30 days of completion. This only applies where the property in question is not the seller’s main home. See how to report and pay Capital Gains Tax.


First published 23 October 2020