What Everyone Should Know About the 2012 Tax Deadline

Do you have to complete a Self Assessment tax return?

If so, the deadline for completing your tax return is fast approaching.  If you didn’t submit a paper tax return (for which the deadline was 31st October 2011) then you have to submit your tax return for the 2010/11 tax year online by 31 January 2012.

Do I have to submit a tax return?

If you earn a regular salary from your employer and don’t have income from any other sources then the chances are you won’t have to submit a tax return.  You will pay your tax through the PAYE system.

If you are a higher-rate taxpayer, you are self-employed, you have some self employed income or you have income from more than one source you will probably need to file an online tax return.

If you have to complete a tax return you should probably have received a letter from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in mid 2011.  If you think you should complete a tax return and haven’t been notified you should contact HMRC as soon as possible.

What is the 2012 tax return deadline?

The deadline for your paper based tax return passed on 31 October 2011.

So, if you want to submit your tax return on time you will have to file it online.  The deadline is midnight on 31 January 2012.

The Daily Telegraph advises: “If you haven’t filed online previously, you need to register and request a secure password, which will be sent through the post. This can take up to two weeks, so you need to get cracking soon.”

The newspaper also says: “Remember that HMRC’s website – and their phone help lines – can get very busy as the January 31 deadline approaches, so it pays not to leave it to the last minute.”

Don’t forget that as well as having to submit your tax return by 31 January 2012, you will also have to pay any tax that you owe by this deadline.

What tax return am I submitting?

The tax return that you have to submit by the January deadline is for the 2010/2011 tax year.  This ran from 6 April 2010 to 5 April 2011 and should include any income you earned during that tax year.

What will I need to submit my tax return?

If you have to submit a tax return online you will need various items of documentation.

You will need your P60 for any employed income, your self employed earnings, pension statements, bank and savings account statements showing any interest and details of any property income.

You will also need proof of any other earnings such as share dividends, other taxable benefits etc.

What are the penalties for missing the 2012 tax return deadline?

If you miss the deadline you will automatically face a penalty of £100 (even if you have no tax to pay).

You will then face a penalty of £10 for every subsequent day that your tax return is late up to a maximum of 90 days (£900).  There are then further penalties if you still haven’t submitted your 2011 tax return.


  1. M. Shoaib says:

    Can I pay balance of remaining tax at a later date or have an extension

  2. M. Shoaib says:

    Can I pay balance of remaining tax at a later date or have an extension

  3. Sam says:

    I became self employed in October 2011, do I need to submit a short tax return before April 2012?

  4. claire says:

    How long do you have to pay the outstanding tax from the return ?

  5. Tax Fix says:

    Kevin – thanks for your question.

    No, you don’t have to submit your return by 31 January 2012.

    If you received the letter telling you to send a tax return after 31 October you have three months from the date you received that letter.

    So, you have until 21 February 2012 to send in your return.

  6. Kevin Fletcher says:

    I only received the letter from HMRC telling me to file a tax return on 21 November. Do I still have to file my tax return by 31 January?

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