What is a tax return, and who needs to do it?

What is a tax return?

A tax return is a form that must be submitted to HM Revenue & Customs, declaring all of your income that is taxable in the UK, claims for tax reliefs, and the tax payable. The period for which you report these is 6 April to 5 April (the tax year); for the 2017/18 tax return, this will be 6 April 2017 to 5 April 2018.

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When to submit?

The deadline to submit this to HM Revenue & Customs is the later of:

If submitting electronically

  • 31 January following the end of the tax year, or
  • 3 months from the date you are issued a tax return

If submitting by post

  • 31 October after following end of the tax year, or
  • 2 months from the date you are issued a tax return

The deadline to pay any tax due is 31 January after the end of the tax year regardless of the method of submission.

The declaration is self assessed, so it is up to you to ensure that you have correctly completed the tax return. It is also your responsibility to inform HM Revenue & Customs if you need to complete a tax return, but one has not been issued to you. The deadline to inform HM Revenue & Customs is 5 October following the end of the tax year.

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Who needs to complete one?

You will need to complete a tax return if:

  • You are a company director
  • You are a partner in a partnership
  • You are self employed and your turnover is more than £1,000
  • You receive rental income of more than £2,500
  • You’ve received other untaxed income of more than £2,500
  • You’ve investment income (including bank interest and dividend income) which exceeds £10,000
  • Your income (or your partner’s) was over £50,000 and one of you claimed Child Benefit
  • Your total income exceeds £100,000
  • You have Capital Gains (or Losses) to declare

The page was put together by Alliotts Chartered Accountants & Business Advisors, for more information on getting your finances in check as a start-up or would like some advise, take a look at their website or give them a call on +44 (0)20 7240 9971.