WITH everything that has happened so far this year, it might be easy to forget your obligations to file a tax return for 2019/20 by midnight on January 31, 2021.

The Government has introduced several measures to help people during the crisis, including deferring some key dates and deadlines involving self-assessment.

As we head towards the autumn, here is a reminder of the key dates and deadlines approaching.

For those who choose to file paper tax returns through self-assessment, the midnight deadline for 2019/20 is around the corner on October 31, 2020.

Those of you who pay tax through payment on account usually have to make your second payment by midnight on 31 July.

However, emergency coronavirus measures gave the option to defer this payment until January 31, 2021.

This is also when you’ll have to make your first payment to cover the 2020/21 tax year.

Some taxpayers think that missing the January 31 deadline is not a big deal, but don’t be fooled into thinking that HMRC will be too busy with COVID-19 support or the end of the Brexit transition period.

If you let us handle your tax return efficiently, you’ll never need to pay more income tax than is necessary, and you’ll avoid any fines.

If you don’t file by midnight on January 31 2021, you’ll immediately get a £100 fixed late filing penalty.

File three months late and you’ll face additional daily penalties of £10 for each day after that second deadline – up to a maximum of £900 on top of the initial £100 fixed penalty.

Despite HMRC running an almost year-round campaign aimed at convincing people to file as far ahead of the January 31 deadline as possible, a record-breaking 958,296 tax returns were filed late in 2020 – equating to almost £96 million in instant fines.

We handle every aspect of self-assessment.

For help and information on tax returns please contact Laura Train at JWP Creers LLP in York.