HMRC is considering making online filing mandatory for all new businesses, for all types of tax, as part of its rebranded “Digital by Default” strategy (aka Carter II). John Stokdyk reports.
From next April 2012, the tax department plans to create an online Registration Wizard HMRC that will enable businesses to register for all of HMRC’s tax regimes and online services. This will be the first step in the “One Click” programme backed by the coalition government to streamline admin for both HMRC and business.
Under new proposals, this would become mandatory by April 2013. Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude thinks it would be easier and quicker for business to deal with HMRC by using the online Registration Wizard the mandatory method to inform HMRC when business activity has started. This process would cover Corporation Tax and Self Assessment, while employers will also be expected to use PAYE Online.
An on-screen tax dashboard is also being considered for the online business tax facility. But as is the way of these things, the plans emerged in a ‘Digital by Default’ consultation document issued this week, with a closing date of 31 October. “HMRC will consult” on the proposals, but some dubious claims within the document suggest that unless there is a mass uprising against it, the decision may already have been taken.