Posted February 12, 2020

DIY self-assessment tax return – Top tips from Whitesides

As the 31 January has just passed I thought I would set out some of my top tips for completing a DIY self-assessment tax return, to help you get fully prepared for the next year.

Don’t Be Late

Leaving it to the last minute is never a good idea, last year over 700,000 tax returns were submitted on the deadline day with 60,000 alone filed between 4pm and 5pm.  If you are one of the 700,000 who submitted your return on the deadline day, this year consider submitting it earlier, saving you the last-minute stress of not being able to find all the information or get through to the HMRC helpline.

If you are late submitting your return there is a £100 fine that increases after the return is 3 months late.  You can appeal against the fine, but you need a good excuse!

Make Sure You Can Log-In

You won’t be able to submit your return unless you have registered with HMRC and have a Government Gateway account.  You will also need your UTR (your tax reference number)

 Keep on Top of Your Paperwork

If you have left your tax return until the last day, trying to process a year’s worth of expenses in a day can be a challenge.  Keeping on top of your paperwork will make this a whole lot easier!  You can use a diary, excel or a computerised system like Xero, Quickbooks or Sage.  Check out our blog on choosing software for your business for more information.

Check your self-assessment tax return and then… Double-Check

Make sure that you complete every relevant section correctly and allow yourself the time to review your tax return before you submit it.  If there are errors in the return HMRC will treat you as responsible and they can impose a penalty.

Learn from your Mistakes

If you have spent hours tracking down paperwork or worrying about how you are going to pay your tax bill, take steps now to make sure you won’t experience the same problems next year.

Cut out the Stress Altogether and Appoint Whitesides as your Tax Advisors

Don’t fancy DIY self-assessment tax return? Our tax team can help take the stress out of preparing your tax return.  If the thought of completing your return is filling you with dread or you just don’t have the time our dedicated team is on hand to support you, making sure you file your return on time and avoid costly mistakes.  Our prices start from £130 plus VAT, for further information please call Sarah on 0113 2582437.

Written by Sarah Greenwood, Chartered Tax Advisor, Whitesides Chartered Accountants