Tax Glossary

Late Filing Fee

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Last updated on:
March 17, 2024

A late filing fee is imposed by HMRC for submitting your tax return after the deadline. The amount of the fee depends on the delay duration. This explanation primarily addresses penalties for sole traders. However, limited companies also face penalties, scaled according to how delayed the filing is, with charges ranging from £150 for up to a month late, escalating to £1,500 for delays over six months.

Understanding Penalties for Sole Traders

Key points regarding late submission of Self Assessment tax returns include:

  • Penalties apply not only for late payment but also for delayed registration as self-employed. These penalties accumulate over time.
  • Interest accrues on overdue payments.
  • Fines are levied for late submissions even if no tax is owed, such as for individuals previously registered for Self Assessment.
  • Initial penalties start at £100 for being a single day late, potentially rising to £1,600 for an entire year of delay.

Utilize tools like the late tax penalty calculator to estimate potential fines. HMRC allows appeals against fines for credible reasons such as natural disasters, serious illness, or bereavement.

Critical Deadlines for Sole Traders

To ensure you're on track with your tax obligations, mark these key dates:

  • Tax Year: April 6th to April 5th of the following year
  • Tax Return Deadline: January 31st
  • Payment on Account Deadline: July 31st
  • Self Assessment Registration: October 5th

Being aware of these deadlines can help avoid unnecessary penalties and ensure compliance with HMRC regulations.

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