There is barely three months left until the deadline for filing Self Assessment returns for 2014-15 passes. After 31 January 2016 automatic late filing penalties will apply.

Unfortunately, on the same date, 31 January 2016, you will need to settle any outstanding tax owed for 2014-15 and make a payment on account for 2015-16.

Readers who are adopting a “head in the sand approach” to filing their returns should reflect on this: is it better to know how much tax you will owe sooner rather than later – you will after all have more time to gather the funds; or, adopt a mañana approach, there is always tomorrow?

From your accountant’s point of view, clients who fall into the latter category are difficult to manage as their reluctance to deliver tax records funnels a last minute rush of activity as the filing deadline approaches.

Could we therefore request clients who have not yet provided tax information to complete their 2015 returns, do so as soon as possible.

And can we thank clients who have been more timely, who have completed their filing obligations, who will not pay a late filing penalty, and who were advised of their tax payments in good time. Thank you.

One final point. It is, of course, entirely possible that you may have overpaid tax for 2014-15. If this is the case, the argument to file sooner rather than later is a no-brainer: why would you leave your cash in the Treasury’s coffers for longer than you need to?

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