Non-payment of Income Tax
Our expert HMRC tax investigation solicitors will support and advise you from the moment you are notified about any personal tax investigation into your accounts. They will assist you in corresponding with HMRC and can also represent you at interviews and hearings.
With all the complexities of taxation, particularly in today’s ever changing landscape, an honest mistake is easy to make – and it can sometimes be difficult to know whether you owe anything at all.
HMRC are now pursuing an increasing number of false statements and incorrect tax returns, and non-payment of income tax is likely to be taken very seriously.
If you have accidentally neglected to file a tax return, or mistakenly paid too little income tax, it’s possible that you will become the subject of a personal tax investigation which may take months before it is concluded.
If you have received correspondence notifying you of income tax investigations that are due to be launched, you should seek legal advice right away.
Offences and Penalties Related to Non-Payment of Income Tax
You may face income tax investigations if you have been accused of:
- Tax evasion
- Providing false documentation to HMRC
- Cheating public revenue
The penalty for non-payment of income tax varies depending on when you pay or if you do so at all. If you pay a day late, you will be charged a £100 fine. If you pay 30 days late, you will be charged an additional 30% of the tax you owe. 3 months late, and you’ll have to pay a fine of £10 per day for up to 90 days. 6 months late, and an additional 5% of the tax due – or £300 if that is the greater amount – will be added to your fine. After 12 months, you’ll be charged another 5%.
After 12 months, if it is believed that you are demonstrating deliberate and concealed withholding of information, you’ll be liable to pay an additional 100% of the tax due, or £300 if that is the greater amount.
If the withholding of information is not thought to involve any concealment, you’ll be required to pay an additional 70%. If you pay in full, set up a payment scheme or make a voluntary declaration to HMRC, some charges may be waived.
You should speak to HMRC tax investigation solicitors in order to decide the best course of action. If you continue refusing to pay, you may be taken to court following income tax investigations.
If you are found guilty of income tax evasion, punishments include a maximum of 7 years in prison and an unlimited fine.
A conviction of providing false documentation to HMRC can result in a 6 month prison sentence or a fine of up to £20,000.
Cheating public revenue is considered a serious crime, and if you are found guilty of this offence, you may be asked to pay a fine of unlimited amounts, or be sentenced to life in prison – though penalties of this severity are rarely handed down.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the last date for filing my income tax return?
You are required to file a tax return online by 31st January each year, or, if you use paper returns, by 31st October.
How long should I keep personal tax records?
It’s advised that you keep personal tax records for up to 5 years following the deadline of each tax year.
How do I know if HMRC are investigating me?
You will receive notification of any personal tax investigation as soon as it begins. Formal investigations may be preceded by requests for further information regarding your tax returns, and you will then be notified if further action is to be taken.
If you receive any correspondence of this kind, you should notify specialist HMRC tax investigation solicitors immediately.
If you are concerned that you may be investigated over non payment of income tax, DBT and Partners can assist you.
Our team of tax investigation solicitors will ensure that you remain fully informed throughout every step of the process, and will work hard to ensure the best outcome for your case.
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