Self-assessment deadline looms

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The Independent Online

Self-assessment taxpayers have just seven days to file their paper returns if they want HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to work out their bills for them. If they fail to meet the deadline, they will either have to do the calculations themselves or file their returns online through HMRC's website.

Going on the figures from previous years, it is likely that around half of the UK's nine million self-assessment taxpayers will miss the 30 September deadline.

However, the really crucial date to remember is 31 January. Anyone failing to file their self- assessment forms for the 2006-07 financial year by then will receive an automatic fine of £100. Around 900,000 taxpayers miss this deadline each year and have to pay the penalty.

For the next tax year, 2007-08, one deadline for self- assessment changes. The submission date for paper tax returns will move to 31 October – miss this and you will have to file online. There will be no option to file a paper return after October, even if you do your own calculations.

The final deadline for internet filing will still be 31 January.

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