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HMRC claim tax return was late

One of our clients has just received a letter from HMRC which says:

"our records show that you filed your self assessment tax return late last year."

The letter then goes on to threaten penalties if the 2011/12 return is late.

This is all very well, but this client's 2010/11 tax return was submitted, online, on 11 January 2012. We received an e-mail from HMRC on 11 January 2012 confirming receipt. HMRC's online services shows that this client's 2011 tax return was received on 11 January 2012. The client was not charged any penalty for a late tax return.

All of this indicates that the tax return was not late. I've no idea why HMRC think the return was late. There's no address or phone number on the letter and, of course, it's not been signed. No doubt this will get blamed on some computer problem. 

Doesn't look good for RTI does it?

Has anyone else had similar issues?


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P.S. Sorry it's all in one paragraph - for some reason it only looked that way when I posted the question.

[Now fixed - our apologies: gremlins within the content management system occasionally play nasty tricks on copy pasted in from Microsoft Word. If you get this again, use the little "W" icon to paste your text in via the Word Clipboard. - Ed]

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HMRC sent a letter without and address or phone no - difficult to believe it came from them Are you sure it's not the build up to an identity scam.

Did it have any reference/NI numbers?

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It showed their name, address and correct UTR number

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We have not received anything like this

... but it is no big deal.  Penalties would be payable if the 2011/12 tax return is late, regardless of whether the 2010/11 return was late or not.

What is the connection with RTI?

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Possible explanation

Euan MacLennan wrote:

... but it is no big deal.  Penalties would be payable if the 2011/12 tax return is late, regardless of whether the 2010/11 return was late or not.

What is the connection with RTI?

Could the Revenue possibly mean that the Return was filed on the later end of the window so just be careful not to stray over that line.  Pointless I know but you have to be imaginative with these things.  

And the connection with RTI is that it's being established by a bunch who show themselves as incapable of organising the proverbial celebration in a brewery. 

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contact addresses

I have had this with PAYE schemes. HMRC have written to say that previous quarterly payments were late (they were not) and letters show no address or contact telephone number although they do show the correct PAYE reference.

I am at a local Working Together meeting next week and hope to find out a bit more then.


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Also received same letter

I was with a client last week and he has also received a similar letter. The return was successfully submitted on -line in Jan 12 as it says so on the website. No penalty demand letter received or due. I have ignored the letter. 

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Purely out of curiosity ( mine ) why not phone the agents hotline quote the UTR and ask them. Don't forget to post the answer

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Tried the agents helpline

Tried the agent's helpline and I'm not sure I'm any the wiser!

The chap I spoke to said that we had filed a paper return in January 2012. Whilst it was late, HMRC amended the status of the client to show that a 2011 tax return wasn't needed. This is why he thought we had received the letter about the late 2011 return.

I told the chap that this was wrong - we had filed a tax return online (using TaxCalc) on 11 January 2012. We received a confirmation e-mail back.

He didn't really have an answer and said he could only say what was on the client's record and could only apologise for the issue of the letter.



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Did you ask him why no letterhead?

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Ah - know this one

This has happened to me before and it is weird.  When the Revenue decide that a Return should not have been required for a particular year they process it as a NIL return.  And if it's them doing it after 31 Oct this emerges as a paper Return and is eligible for fining.  There is supposed to be a system to impede a fine being issued in these circs.  So the system has a flag saying there is a late Return but no fine.

Then along comes your online Return which is then treated as an amended Return and duly acknowledged etc.  

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HMRC Claim self assessment was late

I have had this happen a couple of times.  On one occasion I was told that my and their computers did not catch which happened sometimes in January because of the amount of traffic.  No idea whether this is correct or a convenient story. 

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HMRC random letters

I've got loads of these. A couple more weeks and I'll have a full set for my all my clients. Does anyone want to swap a Mr P Smith for a C Jacobs, I'm, still missing that one.


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