Whether you are employed and paying tax via the PAYE system, a small business using PAYE for your employees, or self-employed, you will be aware that HMRC’s tax year runs from 6th April to 5th April the year after. However, there are other key dates and deadlines throughout the year which are important to note, to avoid incurring penalties for late filing of a tax return or payment of tax due, particularly if the deadline happens to fall on a Bank Holiday or weekend. All deadlines run up to 11.59 pm on that day.
Key tax dates for self-employed people
Tuesday 5th October
If you became self-employed during the tax year to 5th April 2021, and have not had to submit a Self Assessment tax return in the past, you need to register with HMRC by this date in order to receive your UTR (Unique Taxpayer Reference) and an activation code. You need both pieces of information to file your first Self Assessment return. This is also the deadline to register if you began to receive rental income during that tax year.
Sunday 31st October
If you have chosen or been instructed by HMRC to complete a paper version of your Self Assessment tax return, you must ensure it is received by them by this date. As the deadline falls on a Saturday, it needs to be with them by the last working day beforehand, which is Friday 29th October.
Thursday 30th December
Many self-employed people also have earnings from paid employment. If you have chosen to submit your Self Assessment tax return online and you owe less than £3,000 tax, you can ask HMRC to collect whatever is due via your employer’s PAYE system throughout the year from April 2021, thereby spreading out the payments. However, in order to qualify for this method of payment, you must file your online tax return by this date.
Monday 31st January
This is the deadline for HMRC to receive all or any balancing payment from your tax liability for the tax year 2020/2021.
If you decided to give yourself extra time and submit your self-assessment tax return online, it must be filed with HMRC by midnight on this date.
If you are self-employed, this is also the deadline to pay your first Payment on Account which is the amount HMRC has decided you need to pay towards next year’s tax bill (usually equates to 50% of your tax liability for the previous tax year to 5th April 2021). It is particularly important to allow plenty of time in advance of this date to file your return, given that there will always be a last-minute rush.
If this is the first time you have submitted your tax return online, make sure you have registered well in advance for your Government Gateway password and login details.
Tuesday 5th April
Under Self Assessment, if you are claiming a refund for tax which you overpaid during the tax year 2017/2018, this is the deadline for submitting that claim.
Wednesday 6th April
Beginning of the 2022/2023 tax year.
Sunday 31st July
Self-employed taxpayers need to make two Payments on Account each year, as advance payments towards their tax liability in the following tax year.
This is the deadline for your second Payment on Account. Similar to your first Payment on Account, this usually approximates half of your previous year’s tax bill. You should make sure the payment is made by Friday 29th July as the last working day before the deadline.
For businesses operating PAYE.
PAYE and National Insurance Class 1 contributions must reach HMRC by the 22nd of the month if you are paying these monthly. If you are paying less than £1,500 per month, you may be eligible to pay quarterly, in which case the payments are due by the 22nd of the month after the relevant quarter.
If you are making these payments by cheque, HMRC must have the cheque by the 19th of the month, so you need to ensure you have allowed sufficient time for posting, especially at Christmas. The useful table of dates below will help you keep to these deadlines:
Friday 22nd October
Monday 22nd November
Wednesday 22nd December
Saturday 22nd January
Tuesday 22nd February
Tuesday 22nd March
Tuesday 5th April 2022
This is the last day of the 2021/2022 tax year. It is also the deadline for you to claim any tax refund due from PAYE for the tax year 2017/2018.
P60 and P11D deadlines
Tuesday 31st May 2021
You need to have provided your employees with P60 documents relating to tax paid in 2021/2022 by this date.
Wednesday 6th July 2022
If you have employees earning more than £8,500 per annum, who have taxable benefits in kind or expenses not paid through the payroll, you must file Form P11D giving full details by this deadline. You must also provide your employees with a copy of the form by this date.
VAT and Corporation Tax deadlines
VAT returns and payments
You will have chosen your own company financial year, taking into consideration the various factors which affect your particular business. That will then determine your deadlines for filing your VAT return and making your VAT payments. Your VAT online account with HMRC will confirm the deadlines which apply to you for returns and payments. You are legally required to submit a VAT return even if you have no VAT to pay or reclaim.
Making Tax Digital regulations come into force on 6th April 2022 requiring you to file your returns online if you are a VAT registered business with taxable turnover below £85,000.
If you haven’t done so already, it is worth making the switch to MTD compliant digital systems to make filing these returns quicker and easier.
The deadlines for submitting your VAT return online and for HMRC having the payment cleared and in their account are usually the same as those which apply to making VAT payments; that is one calendar month and seven days following the end of an accounting period.
There are different deadlines for payment, depending on whether you use the Annual Accounting Scheme or the Payments on Accounts System. You can check your VAT return and payment deadlines using your online account.
Instead of making four quarterly payments each year, using the Annual Accounting Scheme, you can make advance payments towards your VAT bill during your accounting period, and you are only required to send in one VAT return per year. A final or balancing payment must be made when you send in your return and within two months of month 12 of your accounting period.
If you choose to pay monthly, your payments will be due at the end of months 4 to 12 inclusive in your accounting period.
If you pay quarterly, the payments are due at the end of months 4, 7 and 10.
Corporation tax payments
You will need to work out your deadline based on the accounting period you have chosen which best suits your business. You need to prepare the company tax return first, which will enable you to calculate how much Corporation tax you will need to pay. Different deadlines will apply depending on the level of your taxable profits.
If your business has taxable profits of £1.5 million or less, the deadline for paying this will be nine months and one day following the end of your chosen accounting period for the previous financial year. You must pay your Corporation tax bill before you file your company tax return.
For example, if your accounting period coincides with the end of HMRC’s tax year on 5th April 2021, your deadline for paying your Corporation tax would be 6th January 2022. You then need to submit your company tax return by the deadline of no later than 12 months following the end of your accounting period.
If you are a larger business with more than £1.5 million in taxable profits, and you have a 12 month accounting period, four equal instalments need to be paid according to the following deadlines :
- First payment - six months and 13 days following the first day of the accounting period
- Second payment - three months after the first instalment
- Third payment – three months after the second instalment (14 days after the last day of the accounting period)
- Fourth payment – three months and 14 days after the last day of the accounting period.