HMRC Issue Top 10 Excuses For Late Submission Of Tax Returns

14 January 2015

The 31st January deadline is fast approaching and the HM Revenue & Customs have issued the top 10 excuses for the late submission of tax returns. They are:

  • My pet dog ate my tax return…and all the reminders.
  • I was up a mountain in Wales, and couldn’t find a postbox or get an internet signal.
  • I fell in with the wrong crowd.
  • I’ve been traveling the world, trying to escape from a foreign intelligence agency.
  • Barack Obama is in charge of my finances.
  • I’ve been busy looking after a flock of escaped parrots and some fox cubs.
  • A work colleague borrowed my tax return, to photocopy it, and didn’t give it back.
  • I live in a camper van in a supermarket car park.
  • My girlfriend’s pregnant.
  • I was in Australia.

If you miss the deadline to submit your return or pay your tax, you can appeal against the penalties as long as you have a “reasonable excuse” for doing so. The Revenue give a few examples of reasonable excuses – such as death of a partner close to the deadline, an unexpected stay in hospital or service issues with the HMRC website – but unfortunately none of the above excuses will apply.

Here at Green and Co we submit well over 1,000 tax returns per year so understand the deadlines that are in place.

Please note: This article is a commentary on general principles and should not be interpreted as advice for your specific situation.

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