Some taxpayers will be unable to file their Self Assessment returns online for the year ended 5 April 2024, due to software specification issues from HMRC. Lists of filing exclusions for individuals, partnerships, trusts and estates have recently been published.

If your case is on the list you cannot file online and must complete a paper tax return by 31 January 2025.

Where a paper return has not been filed by 31 October 2024, a Reasonable excuse appeal form must accompany the return to avoid Late filing penalties. Remember that paper returns still need an actual signature. 

As well as online filing exclusions, HMRC's lists include several special cases where they have identified issues requiring a workaround to prevent a filing rejection. Most of these workarounds should have been incorporated in filing software but in some cases, a paper return may be required.  

Special workaround cases which are particularly topical this year are numbers 53 to 57, which relate to basis period reform. Many of these apply where there is a transitional loss. 

Useful guides on this topic

Self Assessment Return 2023/24: What's new?
2024 Self Assessment toolkit: top tips for completing tax returns for the year ending 5 April 2024.

Grounds for Appeal: Reasonable excuse
What is considered to be a 'reasonable excuse' when a taxpayer makes an appeal against a tax compliance failure?

External links

HMRC: 2024 individual returns: Special and exclusion cases

HMRC: 2024 partnership returns: Special and exclusion cases

HMRC: 2024 trust and estate returns: Special and exclusion cases