Taxpayer confusion over HMRC systems failure

15 December 2017

Taxpayers have been left feeling confused as an HMRC systems failure has lead them to receive a self-assessment statement which demands the balancing payment for the tax year 16/17 but omits the first payment on account for the tax year 17/18.

Those who self-assess their income tax must not only make a balancing payment in respect of the prior tax year’s liability on the 31 January 2018, but on the same date are required to make their first payment on account in respect of the next tax year. While tax professionals are advising their clients that a payment on account will be due, taxpayers are left alarmed as this contradicts the postal notification received from HMRC. 

HMRC are aware of the fault in their systems but we have been informed that they will not be resending corrected self-assessment statements. They have stated to us that ‘if a client feels a payment on account is due, they should make a payment’. The issue affects taxpayers whose return for the tax year 16/17 was filed before the 23rd October 2017 .

Taxpayers should take advice from their advisers to avoid interest and late payment penalties. If you believe you are affected and have concerns, we urge you to get in touch.