Although the self assessment deadline is not until 31 January, there continues to be an increase of taxpayers choosing tax returns over turkey by using the festive period to submit their tax returns online
In fact, last year a huge 31,400 taxpayers submitted self assessment tax returns between 24-26 December; with 20,200 tax returns submitted on Christmas Eve, 2,700 submitted on Christmas Day and a further 8,500 filed on Boxing Day.
Roan Lavery, CEO and co-founder of FreeAgent, said: ‘Small business owners and self-employed people have been hit the hardest over the last 24 months with the impact of both Covid-19 and Brexit. There has also been a mental health impact on small business owners since the start of the pandemic with over half (51%) of small business owners polled saying they had experienced burnout since the start of the pandemic and over a third (35%) say they are working longer hours.’
Here we set out tips and advice on how to prepare your annual self assessment return.
Get online – if you are new to self assessment, register with HMRC and give yourself a few weeks to complete the process. HMRC revealed that more than 10.7 million customers completed a tax return by 31 January 2021, of those 96% were submitted online.
Gather your files – gather all your relevant information before you can file your tax return. Depending on your circumstances, this could include proof of self-employed income, a P60, P45 or a P11D. As a basic rule, you’ll need to show any money received or earned from pretty much anywhere – including wages from a job, income from a trust, and interest from your bank account (except an ISA). If you’re a limited company shareholder, you’ll also need to provide proof of any dividends received during the tax year. You don’t want to be gathering this paperwork at the last minute, so make sure this is all in order ahead of time.
Use resources online and get professional advice if you need to – make sure to consult HMRC’s website or get help from a professional accountant or tax adviser to make sure you understand all of the regulations in place specific to your business.
Make next year easy by keeping your accounts up to date – if you keep your accounts up to date all year, then this will help you to avoid having to rush to meet the deadline for filing your tax return. This way you can enjoy your festive break with nothing hanging over your head!
‘We all deserve a rest this holiday period, so make sure you get yourself prepared in order to enjoy turkey and not tax returns this Christmas Day,’ said Lavery.