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to be panicking and scared over this?

(16 Posts)
sunflowersinthesun Fri 06-May-16 17:02:48

Please be kind I'm in a real state right now

In early 2014 I registered as a self-employed cleaner through an agency. Only stayed there for 6 months as we moved to another town and I got another job.

I thought I let HMRC know that I was no longer self-employed but yesterday I was made aware, on the phone to them for another query, that I was still down as being self-employed as I'd filled out a self-assessment form back in 2014.

I hold my hands up, it's my fault I should have dealt with this before, but I didn't, it went completely from my mind when we moved. I also take anti-depressants for depression and anxiety, which affect my memory.

They told me yesterday I have to return two tax returns. For 2013/2014 and 2014/2015. They've given me a deadline in which to do it by.

I asked if they had sent me any correspondance in the last 2 years, telling me that my return was late etc, or any notices of penalties etc.
She said "they may have, but you've obviously moved so it may not have been forwarded on."

I am very angry with myself for not being more on the ball.
I'm going to send these tax returns ASAP.

I've been panicking and crying today about what they might do.
Will they view me as a tax evader?
Will i be prosecuted?

Please can someone give me some advice, I'm so upset.

glueandstick Fri 06-May-16 17:07:06

Think the worst you'll get is £100 fine for late submission

beckywiththemehhair Fri 06-May-16 17:10:03

Dear OP, please don't worry. It was a genuine mistake and at the worst, there will be an outstanding tax bill to be paid plus relevant interest but it's very unlikely that HMRC will prosecute you as a tax evader given the circumstances. <hugs your way>

OurBlanche Fri 06-May-16 17:10:26

Don't panic. I have 13 years worth to catch up on!

I filled them all out but didn't think of the most recent year, so had to do that the following year.

It went from me owing them £13K to them sending me a refund of about £600. no penalty /fine or anything.

They are really nice if you talk to them rather than at them - as BIL found out, to his cost, a couple of years ago smile

sunflowersinthesun Fri 06-May-16 17:10:39

But if they've written to me at my previous address warning me, and I haven't responded, will they view me as a tax evader?

OurBlanche Fri 06-May-16 17:12:30

No. They could have written to me at a previous address for about a decade smile

They really aren't interested in people who have made an honest mistake.

InsufficientlyCaffeinated Fri 06-May-16 17:13:32

I forgot to tell HMRC that I was no longer self-employed and moved house so when they sent me a fine for not filing on time I didn't get it. By the time they tracked me down I also had a £1k fine added for not paying the original fine. I was terrified but called them and they couldn't have been more helpful. They gave me a deadline to rectify it and if I did then they would lift the fines. I fixed immediately and they did indeed write off the fine. If you genuinely make a mistake they will help you to fix it.

sunflowersinthesun Fri 06-May-16 17:14:02

Thank you. I can deal with having to repay tax. And even any penalties.
My anxiety is going through the roof though thinking about the word"prison." sad

InsufficientlyCaffeinated Fri 06-May-16 17:14:34

Now self-employed again and I'm far better at managing tax now, that scare whipped me in to shape!

noeuf Fri 06-May-16 17:15:36

Op if you weren't self employed and earning any money (any employee income would be taxed at source) what tax exactly do you think they will accuse you of evading?

It will be fine. Find the date you stopped being self employed. (To the nearest end of month) and see if there was anything you got paid that wasn't on a previous tax return. Take off expenses.

OurBlanche Fri 06-May-16 17:16:06

Me too smile I filed about 5 hours after the letter landed on the mat!

- it did help that I had only been in business for 16 weeks smile

DrawingLife Fri 06-May-16 17:22:28

Don't worry too much OP! Really, you're fine. Just remember that this kind of thing will happen to many people and they're used to cases like that. It will be evident from your returns that you have had not SE income, so there will be no consequences. You did not gain any advantage by being registered, so you did not defraud anyone. Maybe a fine, but if you get someone nice they may waive even that.

Smellyrose Fri 06-May-16 17:27:14

Simar happened to me and even though I owed tax they dropped the fines.

Please don't worry - just talk to them.

sunflowersinthesun Fri 06-May-16 17:30:25

Thanks guys. Feeling a bit calmer now flowers

EatingMyWords Fri 06-May-16 17:38:27

The worst that will happen is you get lots of penalty notices that you have to appeal. Eventually they will cancel them. Well, that's what happened to me last year.

GnomeDePlume Fri 06-May-16 17:52:31

I had something similar when HMRC suddenly decided to send me 3 years' worth of tax returns to complete plus a £100 fine for each one. I paid the fine immediately then pointed out that as I hadnt had any request for these before that the fine was unreasonable. I got a cheque back in the post.

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