E1.202A Filing date for self assessment returns
There are different filing dates for electronic and non-electronic self assessment tax returns. HMRC has the power to prescribe what constitutes an electronic return1. Broadly, this means a return that is capable of passing through HMRC's electronic gateway2.
The basic position is that paper (non-electronic) self assessment returns are due on or before 31 October following the end of the tax year concerned3. Note that from April 2020, individuals will no longer automatically receive paper returns each year in order to encourage them to take advantage of the online service and cut unnecessary use of paper. This means that individuals who were automatically receiving a paper return in the past now receive a short notice to file. If such individuals still wish to file on paper they can print a blank version of the return or call HMRC to request one.4
Electronic self assessment returns are due on or before 31 January following the end of the tax year5.
It is expressly provided that the last date a self assessment return can be submitted in relation to a tax year is four years from the end of the relevant tax year6. This legislation has the effect of negating the Upper Tribunal's decision in R (oao Higgs)7. See A4.219.
The position is more complicated where returns are issued late. Where a notice to make a return is given after 31 July but on or before 31 October, any paper return must be delivered during the period of three