HMRC reels in roughly £87m from late tax return penalties, says ICAEW

A report released this week by Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) revealed that HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) reeled in roughly £87 million in ‘late filing’ penalties for the 2015/16 tax year.

The statistics said that 870,000 people across the UK missed the 31 January 2016 deadline for filing their tax returns over the internet – meaning that HMRC would have been able to issue fines equating to roughly £87m in the form of individual ‘late filing penalties’ of £100 each.

ICAEW’s study revealed that 150,000 more tax returns were filed on time in 2015/16 in comparison with 2014/15, and that the majority of those who missed the deadline were located in Britain’s capital.

Any late tax returns which remain outstanding after Saturday 30 April will incur further penalties of £10 per day for each day overdue.

Anita Monteith, spokesperson for ICAEW, said: “Although over 10m people filed their tax returns and over nine million of them filed online, a large number of people still missed the deadline,”

“Their immediate fines earned HMRC £87m, which is the equivalent of 290,000 iPads, or 73.1m packets of HobNobs,” she said.