HM Revenue and Customs have this weekend confirmed that people who have filed late tax returns have been let off paying a £100 fine for missing the deadline – on condition that the individual provides a “reasonable” excuse for being late.
In a leaked memo, which has been reported in the Daily Telegraph, tax officials are asked to remit fines without further investigation for those people who show mitigating circumstances and who have appealed their fines.
The deadline for self-assessment returns was midnight on 31st January, and staff have been taken off call centre duties to shift through the appeals.
According to the HMRC website, the list of acceptable excuses for late payment include death of a family member, a stay in hospital, postal delays or computer failure.
Anyone who missed the deadline due to a reasonable mitigating circumstance are asked to fill out a SA370 form which can downloaded here.