Self assessment deadline - 31 January 2021
Each year, around 11m people complete a self assessment tax return. You can complete your 2019-20 tax return at any time up to the deadline but HMRC recommends (and we agree) completing it early to allow time to pay the tax bill or set up a payment plan.
You must complete a self assessment return if you:
- 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; or
- have earned income from abroad that they need to pay tax on.
HMRC’s interim director general of customer services Karl Khan said: ‘HMRC is determined to help people during this difficult time. We know many will have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic, or will need help to spread the cost of their tax bill.
‘That’s why we’ve made it quick and simple to set up a payment plan to spread the costs and help people get back on their feet. It’s easy to do online and there’s no need to call us to set it up.’
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 will not be issued a notice to file for the following year.
- If the director no longer satisfies the criteria for this year, they can call HMRC who can agree to withdraw the notice.
Once you have completed you 2019-20 tax return, and know how much tax is owed, you can set up your own payment plan to help spread the cost of the tax liabilities, up to the value of £30,000.
You 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.
If the 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 self assessment Payment Helpline on 0300 200 3822.