Self Assessment – Help!

Help! What must I do to complete my online Self-Assessment form on time?

If you’re not organised you’re in danger of being ill-prepared, missing out key documents and processing an incorrect submission or missing the deadline of midnight, 31st of January.

HMRC takes a dim view of inaccuracies or missed deadlines and you’ll be automatically fined £100 on 1st of February.  Any further delays and you’ll quickly see the penalties mounting up.

So how can this be avoided?

Getting Started

Often the hardest part is taking the first step. The first step is preparation.

If you’re fully prepared and have all relevant documentation handy an online submission will be easier than you think.

If you’re not organised you’re in danger of missing out important documentation and inevitably processing an inaccurate submission.

HMRC treats an incorrect submission the same way as they treat a missed deadline: fines, penalties and interest on any unpaid tax.

First question to ask yourself is: ’Am I organised?’

Getting Organised

So what do you need in front of you?

  • P60
  • Details of any pay and taxable expenses and benefits received from your employer
  • Bank and building society statements
  • Cheque and paying-in stubs
  • Dividend vouchers
  • Self-employment accounts
  • Documentation about any capital gains made
  • Information on other income: investments, savings, pensions, property or benefits received
  • Paperwork on anything you can claim for, like self-employed expenses or charitable donations.


What must I pay?

By midnight, on 31st of January 2015, HMRC expects you to complete your payment for the outstanding amount of tax you owe for tax year 2013-2014 and your first Payment on Account for tax year 2015-2016.

What are Payments on Account?

‘Payments on Account’ are advance payments towards your self-assessment tax bill and are paid in instalments, twice a year, helping you to spread the final cost.

Who is expected to complete a Payment on Account?

The Payments on account are based on the previous year’s earnings if your tax bill for that year was higher than £1,000.

It’s worth noting a payment isn’t expected if your bill was less than £1,000 or unless more than 80% of it has already been deducted at source.

How do I know how much to pay?

You may already have an accountant that has set up a budgeting plan for you. You may be highly organised and spend time each month budgeting for your next tax payment.

You may not have either! Don’t despair.

The major benefit of submitting your Self- Assessment tax return online is that the amount you owe is automatically calculated based on the data you submit.

Remember the onus is on you to input the data correctly, otherwise the calculation could be wrong and HMRC will still eventually come after you with hefty fines.

Don’t be caught out.

One last word of warning. Remember to press SUBMIT when you complete the form.

Too many people have been caught out believing they’ve completed the form, shut down the computer only to discover – when it’s too late – they’ve wasted hours submitting every detail and then failed to complete the crucial last step and press SUBMIT.

Are you looking for help with your Self-Assessment tax return and HMRC?

At Murrison & Wilson we make it as simple as possible for you. Watch our video about how we’re helping clients deal with HMRC.

Call us now on 0141 290 0262

If you’re worrying you can’t meet your Self-Assessment deadline or you’re worrying about finding the funds to pay your tax bill call us now on 0141 290 0262 or email me at 

Remember January is the busiest time of year for Accountants so the sooner you call the better.


Best regards

Bruce Wilson