87 Percent of Tax Returns Submitted Online

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October 23rd 2018
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87 Percent of Tax Returns Submitted Online

New record set by the Taxman with an online filing high - but 6.5 percent of returns remain outstanding.

After months of reminders and more reminders the self assessment online filing deadline expired last night.

Statistics released by HMRC show that the online filing system is becoming increasingly preferred with nearly 93 percent of self assessment tax returns filed using the online submission service.

Nearly 11.5 million tax return notices were issued for the 2016-2017 period tax year. People could opt to file using paper with an earlier deadline of October 31st 2017 or file online by midnight last night, 31st January 2018.

The standout numbers show not only was the online service taking the lion's share of submissions but many still left it to the last minute. Over 750,000 people filed yesterday with between 4pm and 5pm being the busiest period - a threshold breaking 17 returns submitted per second within that hour alone.

Astonishingly even up to midnight the service was getting hit with a high number of submissions - at a rate of 8 per second!

If any tax is owed then the payment must also be made before the deadline and yesterday nearly 400,000 payments were accepted by HMRC, but likely not using a personal credit card.

People needing additional help had the ability to contact the tax helpline and fortunately the service kept up and nearly 200,000 calls were accepted yesterday with waiting times not exceeding 3 minutes on average.

Now comes the issue of the near 750,000 tax returns still to be submitted. These tax returns will have an automatic penalty of £100 applied - regardless of any tax due or not - so the Taxman can add an additional £75 million to the Treasury's coffers. More penalties are applied the longer the tax returns remain in the wild.

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