Brexit causing delays for late filing penalty notices

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HMRC have advised that they will be late in issuing self-assessment late filing penalty notices this year due to Brexit.

HMRC usually issue the £100 late filing penalty notice for self-assessment returns not filed by January 31 in February.

This means that taxpayers who have missed the filing deadline receive a reminder before daily penalties  start to apply on May 1 (3 months after the filing deadline).

This year, due to Brexit and in anticipation of increased demand at their call centres HMRC have warned that:

  • They will not be able to issue the £100 penalty notices during the usual time frame as staff will need to be freed up for EU exit related work.
  • The latest date that the notices will go out is the end of April, but they will be sent sooner if the Withdrawal Agreement is agreed.
  • Daily penalties for returns filed more than three months late are expected to be issued as normal.
  • If the notices aren’t sent until the end of April it could be mid-May or later before taxpayers actually receive them.
  • This means that some taxpayers may already be incurring daily penalties of £10 per day because their return is over 3 months late, before they have even received their first £100 late filing penalty notice.

It is not known whether HMRC will offer any leniency in assessing daily penalties to take account of the late notification of the £100 penalty.