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300,000 more Self Assessment tax returns are due versus this time last year

As many as 300,000 more Self Assessment tax returns are still outstanding versus this time last year according to new research.

Following an update from HMRC which has announced it will waive the penalty for late filing and late payment for one month, The Accountancy Partnership investigated the level of returns completed versus the previous 12 months.

The online accounting services provider found that almost 6.5 million returns had been completed so far, ahead of the 31 January 2022 deadline, however, at the same time last year, HMRC had received 6.6 million returns. The tax authority also expects 100,000 more returns this year, suggesting as many as 300,000 more Self Assessment tax returns are still outstanding versus this time last year.

While business operating conditions are still difficult for many following the pandemic and in the wake of supply chain issues and energy price increases, accounting experts are urging business owners to complete their returns in order to avoid financial penalties.

Lee Murphy, Managing Director at The Accountancy Partnership, said: “While it can be tempting to put off completing Self Assessment returns the month-long penalty waiver isn’t a deadline extension, that remains as 31 January. We encourage everyone that hasn’t filed their return to make a start as soon as they can as it may take longer to complete than anticipated as Coronavirus grants and government schemes that have been used also have to be accounted for this year.

“If business owners are struggling with their returns speaking to someone that can help as soon as possible is essential. Accountants and finance professionals are also busy at this time of year and there is no guarantee they have the time to support as the deadline gets closer. Therefore, we suggest getting the support and advice needed as early as possible.

“Completing accounts and submitting them in good time gives business owners one less thing to worry about as they start of the new year.”

Recent research into the mental health of small business owners found financial fears have led to sleepless nights for almost a third (30%) of SME owners in the past 12 months. Unsurprisingly, two-thirds (69%) of small business owners – approximately four million people – reported the pandemic has had a moderate to severe impact on their mental health.

Worryingly, just one in 10 (12%) of those SME owners who have experienced issues sought professional help.

For support on Self Assessment or any other business finance matter, and to read the full SME Business Owner Mental Health report, visit