The taxman is set to increase the current fine for late tax return submission from £100 to £1,300.
The incredible raise is to be introduced as Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs feel that the current £100 fine is not harsh enough to act as a real deterrent.
The new fine will be introduced as soon as the next tax year, April 6.
HMRC spokesman Stephen Banyard said: “The vast majority of people don’t have to pay penalties because they send in their return and pay on time. But there are always a small number of people who have avoided filing or paying on time. HMRC spends a lot of time pursuing late returns and getting involved in unnecessary appeals work. We want to focus our resources on more productive work such as catching criminals and collecting tax. The old £100 penalty was not much of a deterrent and these new penalties, which increase over time, will get people to submit returns as soon as possible. Basically the greater the delay, the greater the penalty.”
What this means is that under the new system late filers will be immediately issued a £100 fine that will then incur further daily penalties of £10 each day. The maximum sum this can amount to is £1,300.
However UK taxpayers may feel aggrieved that HMRC is ramping up the costs of mistakes made by the public while it suffers no repercussions for its seemingly endless list of errors.