As the new tax year approaches, Richard Grant, an account manager at Chart Accountancy, provides essential insights for filing a self-assessment tax return with HMRC in 2024. Whether you're a seasoned filer or a newcomer, these 10 tips will guide you through the process and ensure a smooth start to the tax year commencing on April 6th, 2024. 
Identify Who Needs to File: 
Understanding who needs to file a self-assessment tax return is fundamental. This includes self-employed professionals, sole traders, company directors, individuals with income from multiple sources, and those earning over £150,000 via PAYE. 
Prioritize Good Record Keeping: 
Simplify the process by collecting all relevant documents beforehand. Include details of income sources, such as employment with P60s, self-employment, investments, rental income, overseas income, and tax deducted at source. 
Register for Self-Assessment: 
If you haven't registered for self-assessment, do so online through the official HMRC website. Consider consulting an accountant to assist with this mandatory registration process. 
Keep Track of Deadlines: 
Stay aware of key deadlines to avoid HMRC's late filing penalties. The deadline for online self-assessment returns and tax payments is January 31st following the end of the tax year. 
Complete the Tax Return Thoroughly: 
Accurately complete all sections of the self-assessment tax return, including personal details, income, and expenses. Double-check calculations to minimize errors, and seek professional advice if needed. 
Declare All Income: 
Ensure all sources of income are declared, including self-employment earnings, rental income, dividends, and any additional income streams. Failure to disclose all income can lead to penalties and closer scrutiny by HMRC. 
Claim Allowances and Deductions: 
Maximize tax benefits by claiming applicable allowances and deductions. Consider expenses related to business or employment, as well as tax reliefs, such as pension contributions and the dividend allowance. 
Manage Payments Owed: 
In the first year of self-assessment, be prepared to make payments on account for the following year. These installments are due on January 31st and July 31st, reflecting your expected income. 
Keep Detailed Records: 
Maintain records of your submission, payment confirmation, and supporting documents for at least six years, meeting HMRC's record-keeping requirements. Keep records of communication with your accountant. 
Build in a Buffer: 
Anticipate unforeseen events by building in a buffer. Factors like your accountant's availability or HMRC website issues can impact filing, so plan accordingly. 
Filing a self-assessment tax return with HMRC in 2024 is a manageable process with careful preparation. Start collecting data early, complete your return ahead of deadlines, and stay informed about potential changes. Consulting an accountant for guidance ensures a smooth and stress-free filing experience. Good luck! #SelfAssessment #TaxTips #HMRC2024 
Tagged as: tax return 2024
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