February, 2012

How To Claim Tax Back in the UK

Do you need to claim tax back? Perhaps you’ve paid too much tax on your income. Or, you may not have claimed all the reliefs or deductions you’re eligible for on your tax return?

Whatever your situation, you can often claim overpaid tax back. However, the way that you do this depends on how you’ve overpaid. Our guide explains how to claim tax back if you’ve overpaid through your job, your pension or your tax return.

How to claim tax back that you’ve paid through your job

You might have paid too much tax through your job in a number of circumstances, such as:

  • You had an emergency tax code for a while
  • You’ve changed job during a tax year
  • You have more than one job
  • You only worked for part of the tax year

To claim tax back for the 2010/11 and 2009/10 tax years as an employee, you should tell HMRC why you think you’ve paid too much tax. If they don’t already have everything they need to check your claim they’ll tell you what information they need.

Any refund due for this year will be included with your wages. HMRC will send you any refund due for last year.

If you’re claiming for previous tax years, you should write to HMRC and include any relevant documents about your earnings during the tax year for which you’re claiming, such as your P60 or P45.

HMRC will look into your query, work out how much they owe you and send you a refund in the post.

Correcting your tax return and claiming tax back

If you make a mistake on your tax return you normally have 12 months from the 31st January after the end of the tax year to correct it. For example, for your 2010-11 tax return you have until 31 January 2013 to make an amendment.

If you sent a paper tax return, you should write to HMRC and attach the tax return pages that you want to change, clearly marked ‘amendment’. Don’t complete a whole new tax return.

If you sent your tax return online you can make the amendment online.

If you think a refund is due you should tell HMRC how you’d like to receive it. You can receive a repayment direct to your bank or building society account. Alternatively, you can choose to receive your refund by cheque, although this will take longer.

How to claim tax back that you’ve paid through your pension

If you’re receiving your taxable pension income through the PAYE system and you find an error within the current tax year, you should contact HMRC. They will send a revised PAYE Coding Notice to your pension provider who will adjust your tax code to alter any further payments for that year.

Your overpayment will be corrected automatically by your pension provider who will refund the tax in your next payment.

If you want to make a claim for the tax year 2010/11 you should write to HMRC. They may already have everything they need to check your claim but, If not, they’ll tell you what information they need.

What To Do If You Get a P800 Tax Calculation

Have you received a P800 Tax Calculation?

Since July 2011, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have been sending out P800 Tax Calculation documents relating to the 2010/11 tax year.  You’ll typically get a P800 if you have paid too much or too little tax during the tax year.

Keep reading to find out what you should do if you’ve received a P800 form.

What is a P800 Tax Calculation?

At the end of each tax year, employers and pension providers send details of your salary, pension and the amount of tax that you have paid to HMRC.  HMRC use this information to check that you’ve paid the correct amount of tax.

Most people pay the correct amount of tax through the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) system.  If you have paid the right amount, you won’t receive a P800 Tax Calculation and you should not be concerned.

However, it is possible that you will pay too much or too little tax during the year.  For example, your circumstances may have changed during the year or you may have started a new or second job.

HMRC prioritise people who paid too much tax during the previous tax year in order that they get their money back quickly.  If you have paid too much tax a cheque will automatically be sent to you within 14 working days of the date on your P800 Tax Calculation.

HMRC then send our P800 tax calculations to people who haven’t paid enough tax.

What you need to do with your P800 Tax Calculation

If you receive a P800 Tax Calculation, it’s important that you check it to make sure you agree with the information.  The calculation will show:

  • your total taxable income
  • the allowances that are due to you
  • the amount of tax paid for each of the relevant tax years
  • the amount of over or underpaid tax

If you agree with the tax calculation you do not need to do anything except keep the P800 form safe.

If you don’t agree with the P800 Tax Calculation, you can write to HMRC at the address shown on your calculation or you can telephone HMRC on 0845 3000 627.

What happens if you’ve paid too little tax

If you haven’t paid enough tax, HMRC will usually automatically collect any underpayment through your tax code over the next tax year, starting in April 2012.

If paying the amount over a year would cause you some financial difficulty, you should contact HMRC on Tel 0845 3000 627 to discuss your payment options.  You may be able to spread the payments over two or three years.

If you owe £3,000 or more in tax, HMRC will contact you about how to pay.

Be careful of scams

If you receive an e-mail about your tax calculation asking you to disclose personal details, it is very likely to be fraudulent.  Never respond to such e-mails or provide any bank or personal details.