Bizarre Excuses Given to HMRC For Not Completing A Tax Return on Time

Tomorrow is the deadline for Self Assessment Tax Return. Some taxpayers get themselves organised to get it on time but some have bizarre excuses for not submitting it late.

Here are some examples:

  • “My mother-in-law is a witch and put a curse on me”
  • “I’m too short to reach the post box”
  • “I’m too busy after three maids had left us throughout the year”
  • An individual blamed their junior member of staff for registering their client for self-assessment by mistake cause they were not wearing their glasses !
  • A taxpayer said his fingers were too cold to type after their boiler had broken down.

As well as these unbelievable excuses, HMRC also received some dubious expense claims.

These are:

  • £900 for a 55-inch TV and sound bar to help price his jobs
  • £40 on extra woolly underwear, for 5 years
  • £756 for pet dog insurance
  • Music subscription so they can listen whilst they work
  • A family holiday to Nigeria

Obviously, all these excuses and expenses were unsuccessful. However, taxpayers who provide HMRC with reasonable excuse before 31 January deadline can avoid paying the penalty.

Penalties for late tax returns are:

  • An initial £100 fixed penalty. This applies even there is no tax to pay.
  • After 3 months, additional penalties of £10 per day, up to a maximum of £900.
  • After 6 months, a further penalty of 5% of the tax due or £300, whichever is greater.
  • After 12 months, another 5& charge or £300, whichever is greater.
  • Additional penalties for paying late of 5% of the tax unpaid at 30 days, 6 months and 12 months.