HMRC said it will not be issuing penalties to anyone who files their tax return on February 1st or 2nd. Equally, those who have tax to pay will not face any interest on payments made on February 1st or 2nd.
Stephen Banyard, HMRC's acting-director of general personal tax, said: “We have always been very clear that we want the returns - not the penalties. For that reason, we do not want anyone who cannot get through for help and advice on 31 January to be disadvantaged in any way.”
The extension by the tax authority is an acknowledgement that planned strike action by HMRC staff on deadline day will cause shortages, which will in turn have an impact on taxpayers who have queries about their tax returns.
Exchequer secretary to the Treasury, David Guake, said: “This strike could have caused thousands of people to incur fines, so I am pleased that HMRC has taken this common sense approach.
“The Government does not want anyone trying to file their tax return on time to be unfairly penalised because they were unable to get through for help and advice on deadline day.”
HMRC had previously announced that taxpayers who could not get through to the call centres would have to write to their tax office pleading that they had a "reasonable excuse" not to have filed their tax return.
For more information, please contact Glazers, Chartered Accountants London or visit www.glazers.co.uk
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