Thousands of taxpayers file self-assessment returns over festive period

Thousands of Britons took time out of their Christmas holiday to submit self-assessment tax returns to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) this festive season, according to reports.

The Revenue’s own figures suggest that more than 24,000 people submitted their returns online over the Christmas period. This is comparable with 24,546 festive returns recorded last year.

This Christmas, 2,000 Britons took time out from festive celebrations to file their returns on Christmas Day itself, while 6,200 spent Boxing Day submitting their information to HMRC. On New Year’s Eve, 16,000 people filed their returns.

The tax return deadline for the 2016/17 financial year falls on 31 January at midnight.

Any return filed later than this deadline could incur serious penalties, ranging from a £100 automatic fine applied to all online tax returns if they are late by just one day.

After three months, late-payers will be liable to receive penalties of £10 per day for every day that the tax is due, up to a maximum of £900, which will include additional interest on the outstanding tax.

Returns late by six months or more will then incur a further fine of £300 or 5 per cent of the tax due; whichever is higher. If a return is 12 months late, an additional £300 or 5 per cent fine of the tax due will be charged.