Taxation: Self-assessment

Treasury written question – answered on 14th February 2019.

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Photo of Baroness Neville-Rolfe Baroness Neville-Rolfe Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps first-time self-assessed taxpayers must take, including by what date they would need to begin the process, to ensure that they are able to file their tax return by 31 January; and what the penalty is for late submission due to a new applicant’s request for a Unique Taxpayers Reference not being processed in time.

Photo of Lord Bates Lord Bates The Minister of State, Department for International Development

Customers can register to submit a self-assessment return in several ways, including online at, or by phoning HMRC on 03000 200 3500. After registering, the customer will receive a letter containing their 10 digit Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) and information on what they need to do next; this letter can take up to 10 working days to arrive.

If the only reason for a customer filing late is that they are awaiting their UTR then, as long as they file their return within a reasonable time of receiving it, they will not have to pay a penalty.

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