Unfiled Tax Returns: HMRC Issues Warning to 300,000 Late Filers

Approx 300,000 people who have failed to lodge their tax returns for 2010-11 may have legal proceedings started to seize their goods.

HMRC is sending warning letters to those who have now run up late-filing penalties of £1,300 for 2010-11, under self-assessment. The letters are part of HMRC’s continuing campaign against a persistent minority of non-filers.

Tax payers can still pay, or ask for the penalty to be taken off their income in 2013-14 if they are within the PAYE system.

A HMRC spokesman said the defaulters could still pay their fines, and submit the late tax returns.

“These non-filers have ignored numerous communications from HMRC, dating back to April 2011, including flyers, reminder letters, penalty notices and warning letters,” he said.

“A customer can still phone us if they think they should not be in self-assessment, and will be taken through a number of questions to indicate if they should be in self-assessment or not.

“If they shouldn’t have been in it for 2010-11, penalties will then be waived,” he added.

An HMRC spokesman stressed that the arrival of debt collectors on someone’s doorstep would be at the end of process.

Approx 7,000 higher-rate taxpayers who had unfiled tax returns from earlier years had already been issued with warning letters in October.

Chas Roy-Chowdhury of the ACCA accountancy body, called on the tax authority to make it easier for people to pay their fine even when bailiffs arrive.

“It is very difficult to get through to HMRC quickly enough to see get it resolved,” he said.

He suggested a clear and local telephone number be provided to people in this situation.

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Posted in HMRC, Self Assessment, Tax

HMRC Issue Tax Warnings Via Billboards

HMRC’s latest outdoor advertising campaign to get people to pay the right amount of tax at the right time. Warns tax cheats to declare all their income before it is too late!

The campaign, which features a pair of eyes looking through a torn paper aims to give a clear warning that HMRC will be on the lookout for tax cheats, is yet another element of HMRC’s multi-pronged attack on tax evasion, avoidance and fraud, which from 2011/12 aimed to net an extra £7bn a year by 2014/15.

Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury David Gauke, said: ‘Most people play by the rules and pay what they owe, but HMRC is cracking down on those who don’t. Using the £917m the government has made available to tackle avoidance, evasion and fraud, HMRC is closing in on tax cheats.

‘It always makes sense to declare all your income and tax dodgers are simply storing up trouble for the future; getting caught means higher fines, and in the most serious cases criminal prosecution. There is an alternative. Simply visit the new website and make a fresh start.’

HMRC’s new director general of enforcement and compliance Jennie Granger, echoed similar sentiments: ‘Most people pay the right tax. Our campaign is aimed at those who don’t.

‘Our message to the small percentage who don’t is a simple one: ‘The net is closing in. We will detect you if you haven’t put a job through the books, if you haven’t declared investment income, if you’ve hidden assets offshore or if you haven’t even registered for VAT’.

‘For these people my message is: “Please don’t fool yourself that HMRC won’t do anything – it is only a matter of time before we catch up with you.”’

‘If you’ve declared all your income you’ve nothing to fear. And if you know someone who isn’t paying what they should, get in touch with HMRC. It isn’t fair that you pay what you should and they don’t.

‘This campaign is one part of HMRC’s broader work to tackle evasion and fraud which includes taskforces, campaigns and offshore penalties.’

HMRC has in an effort to help defaulters pay the correct tax set up a website – www.gov.uk/sortmytax


Posted in HMRC, Tax
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