Self assessment late filing penalties

Produced by Tolley
  • (Updated for Budget 2021)
Self assessment late filing penalties

The following Personal Tax guidance note Produced by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Self assessment late filing penalties
  • Introduction
  • New late filing penalty regime from 6 April 2023
  • Penalties for late filing
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) ― penalties for late filing of the 2018/19 tax return and 2019/20 tax return
  • Penalties involving offshore matters and offshore transfers
  • Offshore transfers ― 6 April 2016 onwards
  • Interaction with requirement to correct
  • Future changes to penalties for offshore matters and offshore transfers
  • Offshore matters and offshore transfers ― additional penalties on top of tax-geared penalties
  • More...

Introduction

If the self assessment tax return is not filed by the due date and the taxpayer does not have a reasonable excuse for late filing, penalties will be charged. The amount of the penalty depends on:

  1. the tax year in question

  2. the length of time the return is outstanding, and

  3. the behaviour of the taxpayer (higher penalties are charged if the failure to file is deliberate)

For details of the due date for filing the return, see the Self assessment filing deadline guidance note.

For details of reasonable excuse in relation to late filing, see the Self assessment ― reasonable excuse for late filing guidance note.

This guidance note discusses the penalty regime which has applied since 2010/11 and the higher penalties due where offshore matters, offshore asset moves or offshore transfers are involved. It also covers when a penalty notice might be cancelled and how to appeal a penalty notice.

Note HMRC has announced that late filing penalties will not be charged in relation to 2019/20 self assessment tax returns filed before 1 March 2021. See ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19) ― penalties for late filing of the 2018/19 tax return and 2019/20 tax return’ below.

New late filing penalty regime from 6 April 2023

As part of the introduction of making tax digital (MTD), there is to be a new late filing penalty regime which will apply for self assessment and VAT. It was announced in Budget 2021 that the new regime will be introduced in two phases for those within self assessment:

  1. from 6 April 2023 for those with business or property turnover over £10,000 per year

  2. from 6 April 2024 for all others within self assessment

Overview of tax legislation and rates 2021, para 1.68

This follows a number of HMRC consultations on the subject; the most recent of which was published in 2017. For more details of the new regime, see the Tax information and impact notice.

The new regime will be legislated in Finance Bill 2021, Sch 23, 24.

Penalties for

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