By Lynne Gowers on 8th January 2014

What are the benefits of filing your taxes online?

Online tax filing was introduced by HMRC in 2001. By February 2011, more than 78% of tax payers were using the service. It’s easy to see why, as the electronic option offers a number of advantages over the slow, outmoded offline alternative. Here are the main ones.

It’s super fast

When you file online, your return arrives with HMRC as soon as you hit the submit button. Your return is then acknowledged straight away, so there’s no worrying about whether your paper return got lost, held up or damaged in the post. The same applies to your tax calculation. You’ll see immediately how much you owe HMRC or how much HMRC owes you. In the latter case, you’ll get your money back quicker as a result of online filing.

Benefits of filing your tax returns online

You have more time to get it right

The deadline for filing paper returns is October 31. For online returns, you have until January 31 the following year an extra 92 days (93+ when factor in time for the post). Also, you don’t have to complete your online return all in one hit. You can log in and out, saving your information as you go.

You can see all your tax records in one place

When you log into your online HMRC account, you can see at a glance all your relevant tax information – your self-assessment history, the payments you’ve made and how much you owe. You can also see any separate tax documents relating your business. Depending on how you prefer to store your tax documents, you can download them in PDF format or export them into Microsoft Excel. If any of your personal or business details, such as your name or address, change, you can update them via your online account.

Online HMRC accounts are encrypted and protected by a system-generated user ID and a password chosen by you. Once you’re logged in, you can also set up a direct debit to cover future tax liabilities and send enquiries to HMRC via a secure email channel.

Other Options for filing your tax return

If you still find this online tax filing stressful or a chore, then there is another way to file your tax return.

Simply use the services of an intermediary (aka an Accountant like us!), who will collate all of your financial information and provide you with a draft return to approve.  If you’re lucky, they may also file it for you if you’re happy with the work they’ve done.

If you’d like a cost efficient, quick and easy way to file your return, then get in touch with us on 0808 168 0422.

Written by Lynne Gowers
Disclaimer Although we attempt to ensure that the Information contained in this publication is accurate and up-to-date at the date of publication it may not be comprehensive, we accept no liability for the results of any action taken on the basis of the information they contain and any implied warranties, including but not limited to the implied warranties of satisfactory quality, fitness for a particular purpose, non-infringement and accuracy are excluded to the extent that they may be excluded as a matter of law.

View our latest blogs

Take a look at our recent blogs below.

Explore our accountancy packages

If you need a little help to find the right accountancy service, don’t worry. Get in touch with our friendly team for a FREE service consultation.