THE TAXMAN has issued a record number of fines for late tax returns, new figures have shown.
HM Revenue & Customs has fined 1.5 million for filing late self-assessment returns since January, up 8% from the previous year and 56% from five years ago.
Under the new penalty regime introduced this year, taxpayers can be fined £100 if they submit a day late, with £10 a day added after three months up to a maximum of £900. A further £300 fine or 5% of the tax due will be added after six months and the one year mark.
Neil Whyte, tax partner at PKF, told the Scotsman: “HMRC will catch as many of the unwary as the devious, resulting in much greater revenues for the Treasury without George Osborne having to visibly raise tax rates.”
The fines are levied even where no tax is due and the fine will apply next year even when HMRC owes the taxpayer a refund, Whyte added.
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