Self assessment tax returns: don’t miss the deadline

If you were registered as self-employed (either as your main job or because you earn a side income on top of employment) or if you or your partner’s income is more than £50,000 and one of you claimed child benefit at any point from 6 April 2015 to 5 April 2016 and haven’t already submitted a paper return, your self-assessment tax return must be completed online by 31st January. Failure to complete your return in time can result in a fine: anything from £100 upwards.

(There are a few more types of people who need to complete a self assessment tax return — see HMRC’s official advice if you think you might be one of them.)

If you qualify to send a return, you must fill one in even if you made no profit.

If you worked from home during the period for which you are filling in your tax return, don’t forget to claim a portion of your heating and/or electricity, council tax, internet and telephone (or mobile phone) use. RossMartin has some useful equations to help you calculate how much you can claim when using your home as an office.

Once you’ve filed your tax return you must also pay any tax you owe by midnight on the 31st January. Failure to pay the tax balance will result in interest being added to the outstanding amount.

If your income is above the earnings for tax threshold, consider getting in touch with an accountant to help you with your tax return. A good accountant is likely to save you the cost of their fees based on their in depth knowledge of what can be claimed on expenses, declaring charity donations, etc. If you’re looking for an accountant and need a recommendation, get in touch and we’ll find one close to you.