A glitch within the HMRC self assessment system has meant that some taxpayers were not informed of the amount of tax to pay on account by 31 January 2019 and this problem won’t be fixed before 31 July 2019.
In January 2019, HMRC were experiencing a number of computer errors including the omission of tax demands for payments on account (POA) for 2018/19 from some taxpayers’ statements. This problem applies to the taxpayer’s online personal tax account, as well as to paper statements of account issued by HMRC.
This problem also arose for 2017/18 where some taxpayers’ statements did not show the POA, which was due to be paid by 31 July 2018.
How many are affected?
HMRC recognises that this is a real issue. When contacted for comment on this story a Revenue spokesperson said “We are aware of an issue with payment reminders for a small number of customers. Anyone who is affected should contact us and we’ll put it right. Nobody will be charged additional interest due to this problem.”
However, judging by the number of queries on the HMRC agent forum, this is a widespread problem.
The professional tax and accountancy bodies have complained, and HMRC has apologised to those bodies, but it has made no attempt to tell the affected taxpayers what to do. HMRC has also said it can’t fix the problem of missing POA demands in time for the 31 July 2019 payment date.
HMRC has confirmed that if the demands for POA have been omitted from the taxpayer’s statement, that taxpayer will not be charged interest as long as full payment of all the tax due for 2018/19 is made by 31 January 2020.