close up of tax return

Online Self Assessment Tax Return Deadline Approaching

With the deadline for submitting paper returns already passed, it is now the final countdown to completing your tax return online. You now have until the 31st January to get this done; bare in mind if it’s your first time the information needed from HM Revenue and Customs can take up to 20 working days.

Please note, if you plan on paying by credit card, you only have until January 13th before HMRC stops this payment method for individuals. Not to worry if you are a business as you will still be able to pay this way.

Who needs to file a tax return?

If you are self-employed or a company director/trustee, then you most likely do. Also, if you fall into any of the below brackets you’ll have to file a tax return as well:

  • Your taxable income is over £100,00 a year.
  • Gain a considerable amount from savings/property.
  • You receive a second income, eg sell goods online such as eBay.
  • If you or your partner receives more than £50,00 in income and claims child benefit.
  • You made profits from selling items such as shares, a second home or other assets.

Completing your tax return

For those people who have completed a return online before it is as simple as logging in with your password and user ID. Not to worry if you have for forgotten these as you can request a reminder.

If this is your first time, you need a Unique Taxpayer Reference code (UTR). You will need to fill in an SA1 online; your UTR code is then posted to you within ten working days.

Once you have your UTR, head to and sign up for online services. Enter your details, and the system will give you a 12 digit User ID (keep this safe). Head to the next page and select ‘self-assessment enrolment’, fill in your National Insurance Number, postcode and UTR code. After this, you will be sent a gateway activation code through the post; it’s worth noting this also can take up to ten days.

When the letter has arrived, head to HMRC self-assessment website and log in using your gateway access code, UTR and the 12 digit user ID. Now you can start completing your tax return.

Start collecting receipts that will help you claim back expenses and any bank statements that relate to the tax year, 6th April 2016 to 5th April 2017. For employers, you will need your P60, P11D form and your employer reference number.

You may find that some of your tax return is filled in, the taxman may enter gross pay, pension, National Insurance paid, etc. Make sure you check this is correct and then it’s up to you to fill in all other information.

If the numbers aren’t adding up, it is safer to try to declare it with entering an estimated amount. If needed, there is the option to revise the figure further down the line.

Check and check again – before you hit the submit button make sure everything is correct.

What happens now?

With a sigh of relief, your tax return is now complete; you should receive your tax calculation within two days. There is the option to see an estimate by clicking ‘view your calculation’ on the form.

You are required to pay the sum owed by midnight, January 31st, 2018. After HMRC have processed your tax return, if they discover that you were billed too low or too high, you will receive a letter.

HMRC are not lenient when it comes to deadlines, if you file your tax return up to 3 months late there is a £100 fine.

Here at Stonehouse, we help many clients submit their self-assessment tax returns every year. We understand that for a busy business owner it can be easy to forget deadlines. We can help guide you through the process making it less stressful. Give us a call on 01733 265 888 if you want some guidance or would just fancy a chat.