HMRC still waiting on 1.3m Self Assessments

With time running out for tax payers, HMRC is still on course for a £130m windfall in late-filing fines despite 150,000 completed returns having been received today so far.

According to HMRC, in just the hour between 11 and 12 this morning, more than 43,000 Self Assessments were received before the deadline of midnight tonight (31 January 2013) is reached.

An HMRC spokesperson said: 'We have so far received more than 150,000 tax returns today, and we expect that to increase significantly. Last year there were over 445,000 completed on deadline day alone, but currently there are still close to 1.3m as-yet still outstanding.'

Should the 1.3m who have not filed their tax returns fail to do so before tonight's cut-off point, HMRC would be owed £130m in late-filing fines - compared to the eventual £85m taken last year.

Christopher Clark, operations director, at Boox, said: 'The £100 fine will hit tomorrow morning and hurt a lot of families struggling with the impacts of the economic downturn. Tax returns needn't be complex but can present a challenge to many people not familiar with these types of forms and procedures.'

Tony Bernstein, tax partner at HW Fisher & Company, said: 'Filling in a self-assessment form can be a time-consuming process, but by working efficiently in the final hours before the deadline you can give yourself a fighting chance of getting it done in time. Finally, check everything carefully before pressing submit - and make sure you do so before midnight!'

Although the deadline for filing a paper return has already passed, tax returns for 2011/12 can be filed on the HMRC website before midnight tonight.

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