HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has decided to waive late filing and late payment penalties for Self-Assessment taxpayers for one month – giving taxpayers the extra time, if they need it, to complete their 2020 to 2021 tax return and pay any tax due.

HMRC says it recognises the pressure faced this year by Self-Assessment taxpayers and their accountants.

This year, as a one-off, the penalty waiver gives taxpayers who need more time. More time to complete and file their return online and pay the tax due without worrying about receiving a penalty.

The deadline to file and pay remains 31 January 2022. The penalty waiver will mean that anyone who cannot file their return by the 31 January deadline will not receive a late filing penalty if they file online by 28 February

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For anyone who cannot afford to pay their Self-Assessment tax by the 31 January deadline, they will not receive a late payment penalty if they pay their tax in full, or set up a Time to Pay arrangement, by 1 April.

Interest will be payable from 1 February, as usual, so it is still better to pay on time if possible.

See: HMRC gives Self Assessment taxpayers more time to ease COVID-19 pressures

If you cannot afford to pay your latest bill then you can set up a payment plan to spread the cost of your latest Self-Assessment bill if all the following apply: you owe £30,000 or less, you do not have any other payment plans or debts with HMRC, your tax returns are up to date and it’s less than 60 days after the payment deadline.

You can choose how much to pay straight away and how much you want to pay each month. You will have to pay interest.

See: Pay your Self Assessment tax bill

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