HMRC helpline faults leave self-assessment taxpayers in the dark

7th December 2017

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has experienced significant technical issues that resulted in its helplines, which receive millions of calls each month, to crash.

The phone lines, which are currently assisting tens of thousands of UK taxpayers preparing to submit 2016/17 self-assessment tax returns ahead of the 31st January deadline, went down on Tuesday (5th December) morning and were still not operating in the late afternoon.

HMRC confirmed on its Twitter account: “We’re aware of customers having issues contacting us today. We’re investigating this now and are working hard to restore our services as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience.”

The deadline for paper-based self-assessment tax returns for the 2016-17 tax year has already passed. Those yet to file a tax return for 2016-17 must now submit a return online within the next seven weeks before the 31st January 2018 deadline or face an immediate £100 late filing penalty.

Note: The late filing penalty system is currently under review, with plans afoot to replace the immediate fines with a penalty points system.

HMRC staff are not obliged to advise UK taxpayers on how to organise their affairs and minimise their tax owed. If you want to make sure you are paying the right amount of tax – and you don’t want the burden of having to liaise with HMRC via its helpline – you should enlist the help of a professional.

Your local TaxAssist Accountant can help you prepare and complete your self-assessment tax return, calculate your tax liabilities, file the return online and liaise with you on the amounts to be paid and when they are due.

For a fixed price, your nearest TaxAssist Accountant can ease your fears of meeting self-assessment deadlines and allow you to focus firmly on doing what you do best – running your business.

If you’re interested in any of our services, please don’t hesitate to arrange a free initial consultation at your nearest TaxAssist Accountants branch by calling 0800 0523 555 or email us today via our online enquiry form.

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