News and Information from HMRC

Why now is a great time to submit tax returns

Tax returns for 2023 to 2024 can be submitted any time ahead of the January deadline. We strongly encourage our customers and tax agents to submit tax returns well before the deadline for the following reasons:

  • doing tax returns now doesn’t mean payment is made now, the payment deadline is still 31 January 2025
  • our customers can find out what they owe (if anything) which can help them to make informed decisions about their finances
  • if customers can’t pay their tax bill, then they’ll know in advance and can set up a Budget Payment plan or a Time to Pay arrangement with us
  • finding out earlier if too much tax has been paid means that a refund can be issued sooner
  • getting tax returns done early avoids the risk of getting a penalty, and means that customers can concentrate on the important things in life
  • it avoids last minute stress and rush – and if something goes wrong, it will be easier to get help in our quieter months when there is less demand on our customer services

the tax return can be used as proof of income when applying for a loan, mortgage, re-mortgage or when claiming benefits.

Online voluntary National Insurance payment service launches 

It’s now easier for people to check for and fill gaps in their National Insurance record to increase their State Pension, using an enhanced online service that we launched jointly with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in April.

Customers can check their State Pension forecast, check if they’re eligible, and if they identify gaps, they can use the online service to make voluntary contributions on GOV.UK.

Most people with gaps will be able to see which years they could fill, how much it costs, how paying voluntary contributions can boost their State Pension, and then pay online, should they decide to do so.

The majority of customers can use the online service without needing to phone us or DWP, including those living abroad who want to pay voluntary contributions for years when they were resident in the UK.

People can find out more about the service on GOV.UK at the link above, or via links in their Personal Tax account or on our HMRC App

The enhanced online service is not available to customers who are

  • already receiving their State Pension
  • self-employed
  • living outside the UK with gaps incurred while working abroad
  • within 8 days and 4 months of, or over, State Pension
  • people whose records are being updated.

Anyone unable to use the enhanced service can pay voluntary contributions by calling the DWP and HMRC helplines.

Deadlines for paying voluntary National Insurance

  • Men born after 5 April 1951, or women born after 5 April 1953 have until 5 April 2025 to pay their voluntary National Insurance contributions (NICs) to make up gaps from 6 April 2006
  • the 5 April 2025 deadline is for paying voluntary NICs for tax years 2006- 2007 and 2017-2018
  • after the deadline people will only be able to fill gaps going back six years.


© 2024 - Penny Melville-Brown
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