Tax return help is at hand if you have still not completed yours! Although there’s only just over 2 weeks before the 31 January deadline, the best way to get it over with, is to get started. To find out if you need to do one, the deadlines you need to remember and the penalties if you don’t meet the deadlines, see our handy guide http://bit.ly/1mVNnWn
Get started NOW!
If you have not started the self-assessment process yet and it’s your first time completing your tax return online, find your 10 digit unique tax reference number (UTR) on one of the HMRC reminder letters you have been sent. Contact HMRC for an activation code immediately – at least before 21 January to ensure you receive yours in the post in time to meet the completion deadline.
Papers – what papers?
Get your papers together for the period 6 April 2014 to 5 April 2015. These could include your bank statements, household bills and possibly invoices. If you have one, find your P11D which is the form which shows the benefits and expenses you have received in the tax year. If you have been in receipt of earnings, record these and any expenses incurred. Identify your savings and the interest received.
Use your activation code to create an online user ID and password. If you have done this in previous years, you can re-use the original one. If you have lost it, you will need to ask for it to be sent to you. Again, remember it can take more than a week to arrive by post.
Cut your bill
The main way to cut your tax bill is by claiming expenses, such as heating, electricity, the countil tax and internet/telephone bills and a ‘portion’ of your mortgage or rent and insurances, if you work from home. You can also claim for new equipment and for vehicles used for the business including petrol and car breakdown cover.
You can even claim against memberships, such as, professional subscriptions but you cannot claim for business lunches.
Avoid silly mistakes
To avoid mistakes about what you can and can’t claim, contact your local Stockport accountants for help with your return.
However if you are sure you want to go it alone, don’t make the silliest mistake of all, which is to forget to scroll down to the ‘submit’ button! Also make a note of your confirmation code which is issued after submitting the return, just in case you need to speak to your local HMRC office at a later date.
Remember procrastination http://bit.ly/1AvyuyI won’t help at this stage