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HMRC tax estimates become enforcible if returns are not submitted in time?

Are tax extimates enforcible?

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I had a client come to me, hadn't filed in over five years, he is a self-employed plumber.  It was a mess but I put together what I could and submitted all returns.

The tax estimates / determinations were excessive to say the least, over £17k in one year, when submitted the tax bills averaged £5k-£6k so were a lot lower.  I am just off the phone from the helpline and have been told that although the returns have now been received they will not adjust the tax liability from the estimated position as they are too late?!  I said their estimations were wildly inaccurate as what kind of self-employed plumber has a £17k tax liability? and the response was the determinations are set high to encourage people to file the returns. He said I should write a letter which I will as this is every shade of wrong even allowing for my clients non-filing history.

Help, any suggestions or experience of this nature?

Thanks in advance


Replies (4)

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By Discountants
07th Jul 2016 16:07

You can try for special relief - this is for overpayments of tax after the closing window of 4 years.
It is, however, at HMRC's discretion to give it.

Thanks (1)
By taxguru
07th Jul 2016 16:25

Based on the limited information (e.g. hadn't filed in over five years), I can comment as follows, on the presumption that HMRC have issued a notice to deliver a tax return for each of those years;

1. HMRC determination will be superseded by any self-assessments made you provided such assessments were made within 3 years beginning with the filing date which is the relevant 31 January.

2. Alternatively, the self-assessments could be made within 12 months from the date of HMRC determination.

So all may not be lost - just check the dates

Thanks (1)
By Wanderer
07th Jul 2016 17:17

HowieTNC wrote:

and the response was the determinations are set high to encourage people to file the returns.

Whilst this is undoubtedly true the officer should raise determinations 'to the best of his information and belief'.

Might be an angle if they haven't?

Thanks (1)
Replying to Wanderer:
By vince8
08th Jul 2016 10:03

I can never get a plumber, they are all too busy working. Knowing what they do charge when they eventually turn up 17k is entirely reasonable. However, was he picked up in the recent campaign against plumbers, when maybe you could have offered to deal with him as such and get a better result?

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