tax return

Submitting your tax return in good time over the festive period

Do you leave your tax return to the last minute? At Gravita, we love a statistic, and last year more than 12 million of us were expected to file a tax return in the UK.


HMRC estimated that 600,000 missed the deadline. And we imagine the majority, unintentionally so.


In addition, the tax return forms were available to download, (after HMRC previously mentioned they were removing the option). The department also wrote to the 135,000 taxpayers that usually file paper returns to encourage them to file online. Whilst we understand that some people just prefer to do things offline, by April 2026, if MTD for ITSA is finally introduced, many of those won’t have a choice and will need to digitalise their processes and file a tax return online. For more info, please click here.


At Gravita, our hard-working private client department ensure that thousands of our clients submit their tax returns on time, and with the correct information, each year. Anybody who submits a tax return will know that HMRC requires a lot of information relating to the previous tax year including accounts, invoices, receipts, other records of income, relevant expenses, contributions to pensions, contributions to charities, P60s, P45s and so on! Many of us fall into the trap of thinking, aha, it’s January, I must dig out the information required to prepare and submit my return. As much as we encourage our clients to engage with us as early as possible in the process, our tax return department do receive a lot of panicked calls throughout January,  from clients who aren’t able to easily find all the information they need. Many forget that you can actually submit your tax return at any point throughout the year! You’ll then establish what you owe to HMRC and will have a longer period in which to prepare for that payment. And of course, we will remind you in January that it needs to be paid and organise that for you. Perhaps something to consider for a new year’s resolution.


So, this year…we are recommending to our clients who entrust us to look after the complexities of their tax returns, and have yet to send us the information, to use December and the holiday period (or even earlier!) to dig out that crucial info and send it to us in good time, so as to relieve yourself of the additional stress in January.


If you do your tax return yourself, remember that HMRC’s systems are slower in January, if you have questions their call centre is exceptionally busy (sadly HMRC haven’t shared stats on their wait times) and you would be doing yourself a great service to start the new year with this out of the way and behind you.


It is also worth bearing in mind that if you are going to submit a tax return for the first time, HMRC will issue you with a UTR number: your ‘Unique Taxpayer Reference’ number. Rather like your National Insurance number, this will stay with you for life. You will need to register for and receive your UTR number before you submit your tax return. This can take weeks to come through, especially at the busiest time of the year, and is another reason why you should start thinking about self-assessment now, rather than leaving it to the last minute.


Failure to submit your tax return on time will result in penalties. If you’re thinking about enlisting the services of an accountant to help you through this process, do also remember that January is the busiest time for all tax teams and again it’s important to start those conversations as early as possible.


And just one more stat which certainly made our tax team smile this year: More than 42,500 customers chose to see in the new year by submitting their return on 31 December and 1 January; each to their own!


What next?


So, start to pull together all the information from 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2023 and get that tax return submitted in good time. If you need any help, please contact Michaela Lamb, or a member of the Gravita tax team, who will be able to help you.


Similar Insights

Election Manifesto
Unpacking the 2024 Election Manifestos: What Tax Changes Could Mean for You
With the 2024 election drawing near, understanding the potential tax implications of each party’s...
Read More
Webinar recording: MBOs, MBIs & EOTs: The benefits, pitfalls and choosing the right route to succession
Choosing the right succession planning route is an area that all business owners think about regularly,...
Read More
Tax computations
Company tax computations: The tax issues
We invite you to join us and our tax consultant, Tim Palmer, when Tim will be reviewing the areas within...
Read More

Sign up to Gravita's latest updates and newsletters

Stay up-to-date with our event invites, latest news and updates, straight from Gravita’s experts.