If you are thinking “thank goodness I haven’t been sent a tax return, I don’t need to submit one” think again. There are various reasons why you may still need to file a tax return even though HMRC haven’t sent a request to you.
Firstly, if you received a request from HMRC to file a personal tax return, this is a legal request and you must file a return. If you do not comply with this request you face penalties from HMRC.
If you haven’t received a tax return or request you may still need to file one if any of the following are applicable (this is not an exhaustive list):
- You are self-employed or a partner in a partnership
- You have received dividends that take you into the higher rate tax band (refer to our Tax Centre for the latest rates )
- You receive rental income
- Income from untaxed savings (excluding ISAs)
- You have received any other type of income that has yet been undeclared, e.g. after dinner speaking, consultancy work, online trading
- You have a capital gain, e.g. you have sold a second property, sold shares
Other reasons why you may need to file a tax return, and where you could potentially receive a tax rebate / saving are:
- You receive a mileage allowance from your employers that is less than the tax free mileage allowance (2010/11 – 40p for the first 10,000 miles, >10,000 miles 25p)
- You made pension contributions, but are a higher rate tax payer
- You have paid for certain expenses or professional subscriptions that haven’t been reimbursed by your employer
- You have made a capital loss
- Your PAYE code hasn’t been applied correctly, perhaps you have multiple jobs, or only worked for part of a tax year
Preparing self-assessment tax returns can become time consuming and complicated, if you are not clear on something, we recommend that you always ask for professional advice, this can often minimise the stress in tax return season and could potentially find you even more tax savings.