So what is a self assessment return?
A self assessment return is a way for self-employed people to file their tax returns. Unlike employed people whose income tax is deducted before they are paid. This means they don't have to do anything extra. For self employed people however you will need to file your tax return online or via post.
What are the tax return deadlines for self assessment return?
To file your tax return you will need to register by October 5th, file paper tax returns by midnight of October 31st, file online tax returns by midnight of 31st January and pay your tax return by post by midnight of 31st January.
These deadlines are applicable to the previous tax year so by 31st January 2018 you will be filing for 2016/2017.
So, how do you know if you need to file a self assessment?
Do you work for yourself
Are you a company director
Do you earn £100k or more
You have savings or investments of £10k or more before tax
Receive income from abroad
Earn £2.5k or more in untaxed income e.g income from your Airbnb
Do you earn over £50k in a family claiming child benefits and are you the highest earner
If you have answered yes to any of the above then you most likely will be required to file a self assessment return.
What are the charges for paying your tax late?
If you file your self assessment return late you will be fined £100. You will also be fined £10 per day up to £900 if your tax filing is more than 12 weeks old.
How to submit your self assessment tax return?
To file your self assessment tax return you will need to register on the GOV.UK website. The average time for this to be completed could be 21 days so register in good time to avoid any unexpected delays.
There are different ways to register for a self assessment tax return depending on whether you are
A partner in partnership
Not self employed e.g you own £100k or more
Self employed or sole trader**
This can all be done on the GOV.UK website and after which you can then file your self assessment return on the HMRC self assessment return online service.
What do you need to file a tax return?
If you are filing via post you will need to download the SA100 form and send it back to HMRC before the deadline.
You will need a P45 if you have just left a job in the previous tax year.
P60 from your employer showing the income you earn and the tax you have already paid.
A P11D or P9D which shows any benefits or expenses claimed.
Details on any rental income and expenses.
Details of any savings and investments(including dividends) showing how much you made from them.
Details of any self employed income with receipts and bank statements to evidence that.
How do you pay your tax bill?
You can pay your tax to HMRC using direct bank transfers or by paying via debit cards. You cannot pay your tax bills with credit cards.