Be aware that the deadline for self assessment tax returns is January 31st for those who submit their returns online. An instant penalty of £100 is payable for those that fail to do so, with further fees payable the longer it takes to submit the return.
Read on for some tips to help you on your way.
1. Open an account online now
Opening your account can take longer than you may think. Visit the registration page here.
2. Collect all the documents you'll need
Ensure that you have all of the necessary documents you need before beginning the self assessment process such as:
- bank statements
- employment income information
- income and receipts for expenses (if you are self-employed)
3. Get your allowances right
Remember that the capital gains tax allowance is £11,100 and the personal tax allowance is £11,000 for the 2016/2017 tax year.
Higher rate tax payers need to claim tax relief on their pension contributions in order not to miss out.
4. Don't leave out any income
Ensure that you have included all earned income, including:
- interest from savings accounts
- dividends from investments
- pension income
- rental income
- state pension
5. Take advantage of tax-deductible expenses
Gift aid on charitable contributions, membership costs for zoos, museums and conservation charities are all tax deductible.
Memberships in professional bodies that are required as part of your occupation are also.
6. Get your NICs right
Remember that a two tier system exists for the self employed and ensure that you do not overpay if you have more than one job.
7. Take your time and double check your return
You can save your return and come back to it later, so use this function to double check any areas you are unsure of.
8. Get expert help if you need it
HMRC has provided a large amount of helpful information online, however seek help from an accountant or tax adviser if your situation warrants it.
9. If the tax bill is unexpected, check your tax code
An incorrect tax code may explain an unusual amount has been assigned to your return. If you suspect this may be the case, contact HMRC as soon as possible.
Westminster Wealth Management is able to assist in putting your personal finances in order, ensuring that your money goes towards building wealth for the future. Contact us today.
Information is based on our current understanding of taxation legislation and regulations which is subject to change.
Self assessment: a step-by-step guide to completing your tax return