Advisers drive rise in online tax returns

A record 2.9 million online filings were made up to the 31 January deadline,
a figure predicted by Accountancy Age, with advisers filing two million returns
for their clients. The overall figure climbed by 50%, while those through
advisers rose 56%.Paul Aplin, deputy chair of the ICAEW’s tax faculty, said
advisers had asked for capacity and robustness, and HMRC had delivered. ‘Apart
from a few minor glitches, it went extremely well.’HMRC acting chairman Paul
Gray said:‘All the work we have undertaken to increase the capacity and
robustness of our IT systems has paid off.’

But online filing was not totally smooth. A problem with HMRC’s software
allowed customers to choose to have up to £2,000 of tax collected through next
year’s PAYE, when this should have been blocked from December 30.

HMRC said it was clear to taxpayers filing that the deadline had passed, and
any sum owing would have to be paid by 31 January, or they would risk having
interest and a 5% surcharge added.

Related reading