expat network

Move From A Paper Tax Return To Online Submission

tax return
If you’re new to submitting Self Assessment tax returns, it pays to know that there are three ways of filing. Firstly, you can submit via the HMRC site and receive instant acknowledgement post-submission. You can also use commercial software to do this for you. Or, you can send a paper tax return to HMRC in the post.

This article was written exclusively for Expat Network by SimpleTax


Whichever method you choose, it’s important to understand your exact responsibility. For those who are self-employed or let out UK property, paper submissions can be complicated as they involve additional forms and documentation.

With the 31st October paper return deadline having passed , we thought it would be useful to invite Mike Parkes from GoSimpleTax to explain how best to prepare for the Self Assessment tax return submission and file with confidence.


1. Be conscious of the deadline

To file a paper tax return, you have to  file before the 31st October deadline. Failure to do so will see you start being charged penalties from the 1st November. If you decide to submit a paper return we would recommend sending your paper submission prior to the October deadline, either through recorded delivery or with some proof of posting in order to prove your compliancy.

If you have not submitted a paper return you have longer to submit online tax returns. The deadline is the 31st January, and you will be charged penalties from the 1st February for any late submissions.


2. Organise supplementary pages

Remember, it isn’t enough to submit the main SA100 tax return. You need to bundle it together with the rest of your documentation that references your property or self-employment income.

For any income as a landlord, all that’s required is to file an additional form (SA105) and submit it alongside your regular Self Assessment tax return.

However, with self-employment, the additional sections required of you could be either the SA103S or the SA103F. The difference between the two is that the former is for those who had an annual turnover below the VAT threshold for the tax year (£85,000 as of 2019/20), and the latter is for those who earn above the VAT threshold.


3. Be open to online

While you may have historically always submitted your tax return by paper, the vast majority of tax returns are now submitted online. Last year saw only 700,000 paper submissions, for example. Improvements in technology and the extra three months to file are the main incentives to submit an online tax return.

Having an online account with HMRC allows you to not only extend your filing deadline but also check your details at any time to see how much tax is due and act accordingly.

If you’re happy to tweak the way in which you keep your records and adopt digital record-keeping, this will help minimise admin further, as well as enable you to submit your tax returns and automatically calculate your tax.


About GoSimpleTax

GoSimpleTax offer much more than an easy Self Assessment tax return submission. Their software delivers a realistic means of reducing tax liability and allows you to focus on what you love.

With their intuitive software, you’re capable of streamlining your finances in a way that makes a tangible difference. Take a free 14-day trial today, no credit card required.