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Software and PINs cause filing problems

29 January 2009
Categories: News , Admin
HMRC to look sympathetically at substantiated reasonable excuse claims

It is understood that at least one tax software company is being overburdened by the number of calls from tax advisers and agents, many of whom are finding that they are not being placed into the queue of callers.

As a result, HMRC have said that they will look sympathetically at substantiated claims for reasonable excuse for late filing of returns, if the taxpayer

  • attempts to speak to a software company to eliminate a problem that prevents the completion and hence submission of a return, and then
  • ‘promptly’ files the return online after getting through to the software company and solving the problem.

If the problem cannot be resolved by the software company and the taxpayers needs to submit a return on paper, the usual rules for reasonable excuse will apply.

The Revenue has indicated that such cases will be treated sympathetically.

Other taxpayers have reported that they have not been able to file online because they have not received a PIN.

In response to this issue, HMRC have said that an individual or agent will be treated as having a 'reasonable excuse', if he or she

  • registers for the online service before 31 January,
  • does not receive the PIN by 31 January, and then
  • files a return online 'promptly' once the PIN has been received.

In both situations highlighted above, the taxpayer will receive a penalty notice, and then should appeal against it using the form attached to the notice, setting out details of the software problem or when he/she registered for the online service.

Categories: News , Admin
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