Payment plans help rising number of Self Assessment customers

Receiving a big tax bill can be overwhelming and can create an even bigger problem – how to pay it.

To help provide a solution and ease the financial burden, HMRC offers the Time to Pay scheme, enabling Self Assessment customers to set up a payment plan to spread the cost.

Since 6 April this year, more than 21,000 customers have signed up, an increase of almost 4,000 on last year.

Myrtle Lloyd, HMRC’s Director General for Customer Services, said: “We’re here to help customers get their tax right and if you are worried about how to pay your Self Assessment bill, help and support is available.”

The deadline for customers to submit their tax returns for the 2021 to 2022 tax year and pay any tax owed is 31 January 2023 and HMRC is encouraging anyone yet to complete their return to do it early. Those who have already completed their Self Assessment know what they owe and can budget to make payments on time.

Filing early also means customers, who are unable to pay their tax bill in full by the deadline, will have plenty of time to access support and advice on GOV.UK. HMRC may be able to help by arranging an affordable payment plan.

In the 12 months to 5 April 2022, almost 142,000 customers were choosing to use self-serve Time to Pay to pay any tax owed for the 2020 to 2021 tax year, spreading the cost of around £475 million into monthly instalments.

Using HMRC’s self-serve Time to Pay facility means customers benefit from a tailored payment plan via monthly direct debits. This means they can spread the cost of their tax bill based on how much is owed and the length of time they need to pay. Self Assessment customers can apply on GOV.UK if they:

  • have filed their tax return for the 2021 to 2022 tax year
  • owe less than £30,000
  • can pay in full within 12 months

If customers owe more than £30,000, or need longer to pay, they should call the Self Assessment Payment Helpline on 0300 200 3822.

A list of alternative payment options, including payment via the free and secure HMRC App, are available on GOV.UK.

 

A full list of payment options and eligibility criteria is available on GOV.UK by searching ‘HMRC payment option’.

All Self Assessment customers need to be alert to the risk of criminals emailing, calling or texting claiming to be from HMRC. Scams come in many forms – some threaten immediate arrest for tax evasion, others offer a tax rebate.

Contacts like these should set alarm bells ringing and HMRC advises customers to take their time and check scams advice by searching for ‘HMRC scams’ on GOV.UK. HMRC also urges customers never to share their HMRC login details. Someone using them could steal from the customer or make a fraudulent claim in their name.

If you need any advice with paying your tax, get in touch.

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