Accountancy Age exclusive: E-filing delayed again

In April the Revenue failed to launch the website, specially-designed to allow the UK’s 9m self-assessment taxpayers to file returns on the net, and announced it would be ready at the end of May.

But Accountancy Age has now learned that the date has now been put off until the beginning of July.

Further delays have not been ruled out by embarrassed Revenue officials, and additional testing is being carried out to the site.

An official confirmed: ‘We are pretty confident the latest date will be met, but nothing is definite and we cannot rule out further delays.

‘We are running more tests on our software but we will not go live until everything is running smoothly.’

The second delay means the project will have been delayed for almost three months. Accountancy Age last month revealed there were problems with security on the site, with the Revenue’s software provider – EDS – calling for more testing time.

The new revelation is likely to cause yet more damage to the Revenue’s efforts to encourage internet filing.

It is still unclear exactly when the new File By Internet (FBI) system, aimed at the web-wise self-assessment taxpayer, will go live.But the Revenue’s ‘Electronic Exchange’ web pages have been carrying an apology for the delay.

It said: ‘We had planned to provide this service from the end of April. We have now decided to perform further testing, and this will delay its introduction.’However the Revenue insisted it had enjoyed success with the number of registrations it had received for e-filing.

A web page on which potential File by Internet users can register their details has been available since 3 April and an estimated 50,000 people have registered so far.

Inland Revenue: Filing by internet

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