Many taxpayers are still unable to file their Self Assessment returns for the year ending 5 April 2019 online due to software specification issues from HMRC. If your case is on the list you cannot file online and must complete a paper tax return. Don't forget that it needs an actual signature. 

HMRC have been able to remove 18 exclusions from the list following a fix, however, nine new exclusions have been added for 2018/19 compared to 2017/18.

These include:

  • 100. Disclaim the personal allowance. Cases where the taxpayer wishes to disclaim the personal allowance e.g. to claim tax relief on Enterprise Incentive Scheme (EIS) subscriptions to allow a later claim to Capital Gains Tax (CGT) relief.
  • 105. Marriage allowance. Affects cases where it would be more beneficial to retain the marriage allowance rather than the beneficial ordering of allowances.
  • 106. Scottish taxpayers. Affects Scottish rate taxpayers who have reliefs of more than their non-savings income and savings income.

Taxpayers and their agents should note:

  1. Where a personal return cannot be filed online for a reason listed, as long as a paper return is delivered on or before 31st January following the end of the tax year to which the return relates, HMRC will accept that the taxpayer had a reasonable excuse for failing to file a paper return by the 31st October deadline. A reasonable excuse claim should accompany the paper return.
  2. Any paper return submitted must conform to the normal rules for paper returns even if it is computer generated e.g. it must hold a valid signature.
  3. Where an HMRC recommended workaround causes an online return to be submitted with an entry that is incorrect, HMRC will not take action on the particular entry for that reason alone if the inaccuracy is in accordance with the workaround and has been made purely to allow for online filing.
  4. Where HMRC’s initial processing of a paper return or an inaccurate online return (as above) results in an incorrect tax liability, they will issue a revised calculation in due course.

See HMRC's 2018-19 online filing exclusions.

See also Self Assessment 2017-18 returns: online filing exclusions

Useful guides on this topic

2018/19 Self Assessment Tax Return toolkit

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