Tips for Preparing Your Self-Assessment Tax Returns

As we approach the end of the current tax year, individuals and businesses are gearing up for the annual task of collating their information to enable them to file their Self-Assessment Tax Returns with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). This process can often seem daunting, but with careful preparation and organisation, it can be managed very smoothly – especially when you are in the hands of NRB.

Below we’ll discuss essential tips for preparing your Self-Assessment Tax Return, collating the necessary information and ensure there are no hidden surprises ahead of the January deadline.

Start Early!

As many of you will know, the tax year runs from April 6th to April 5th the following year. Starting early gives you ample time to gather your financial documents to enable us to fill out your Tax Return accurately. It also allows us to address any complexities in your tax situation/position and ensures that you meet the filing deadline set by HMRC without unnecessary stress.

By preparing your Return early, this does not accelerate the date in which HMRC will look to collect any taxes owed. The deadline to make any balancing payment due to HMRC is in line with the filing deadline, being 31 January (each year), unless HMRC state otherwise. Dependant on your tax position, this may even accelerate a repayment due, so it is in your best interest to get your Tax Return filed early.

Gather All Relevant Documents

Before we begin the process of preparing your Tax Return, you will need to start to gather all the necessary documents. This may include P60 forms from your employer, P11D forms for any benefits or expenses, dividend vouchers, bank statements, rental income statements, and any other relevant financial documents. Ensure that you keep accurate records and receipts to support your claims in case of an HMRC enquiry.

Having everything in one place will make the process smoother and help you avoid overlooking important information. To ensure the deadlines set by HMRC, are to be met, we stress that all client’s provide us with the information by 30 September following the tax year.

Review Changes in Tax Legislation

We are always on hand to advise our clients of changes to tax legislation that may help minimise your tax liabilities however, it is always good to make sure you are staying informed too. By doing so, this may impact your tax situation/position, including changes in tax rates, allowances, deductions, and credits. HMRC regularly updates its guidance and publications, so it’s essential to stay abreast of any changes that may affect your Tax Return.

Seeking Professional Assistance

Whilst we take care and attention to detail to every single Self-Assessment Tax Return we complete, it is important that you reach out to us before we begin preparing your Return, especially when you may have complex tax affairs and to highlight any areas of concern. We as trusted advisors have the expertise to navigate intricate tax laws, maximise deductions, and ensure compliance with HMRC regulations. Moreover, we can provide peace of mind and potentially save you money in the long run by optimising your tax position.

Don’t Forget the Deadline

There are two deadlines when it comes to the filing of your Self-Assessment Tax Returns. If we are filing this by paper, this will need to be submitted by 31 October, following the end of the tax year in which it relates. If we are filing electronically and online, the deadline becomes 31 January following the end of the tax year. Failing to file your Tax Return on time can result in penalties and interest charges imposed by HMRC, so it’s crucial to mark the deadline on your calendar and prioritise meeting it.

In conclusion, preparing your Self-Assessment Tax Return requires careful planning, organisation, and attention to detail. Remember, proper preparation is key to a stress-free tax filing experience.

Therefore, please reach out to your trusted NRB advisor or the NRB Tax Team, if you have any queries or concerns surrounding the preparation of your Self-Assessment Tax Return.

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Tax Team Contact Details

To find out more information about the tax team at NRB and to get in touch, please click the links provided below.

Scott Lees – Senior Tax Manager

Mandy Schofield – Tax Manager

Kieran Maher – Tax Senior

Josh Silcock – Tax Semi-Senior


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