The UK tax landscape is experiencing a tectonic shift. Government plans for a total digital switchover are underway, set to be rolled out from April 2019. For some, this isn’t revelatory – Making Tax Digital (MTD) has been floating in the public consciousness for a while now.
More people are submitting their Self Assessment tax returns online than ever before. Last year, 89% were completed online via HMRC’s tax portal. According to GoSimple’s Amanda Swales, this will only increase, and mitigate the £8bn annual loss resulting from submission errors.
With the 31st January deadline fast approaching, many taxpayers are exploring online solutions for the first time. If that includes you, here’s why you should get started sooner rather than later.
Submitting online? Don’t delay!
While a few weeks remain until the 31st January deadline, it’s wise to start your Self Assessment tax return before the New Year. In January 2016, over 513,000 returns were completed on the 29th, totalling more than 21,000 every hour. As HMRC’s servers and phone lines are bombarded at this time of year, those leaving their submission to the last minute can suffer from a slower, more stressful experience.
Compiling your tax returns requires a clear understanding of what you’ve earned, what you’ve spent, and what allowable expenses you can claim. Starting now means you’ll have plenty of time to look back through your records, identify any gaps and resolve any queries you have ahead of the January rush
This is all infinitely easier if you’ve made the switch from spreadsheets and paper to digital bookkeeping solutions.