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TaxRobin, Tax Consultant
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 17612
Experience:  International tax
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Hi. Im really worried. I owe some tax but from 2004/5 .Im

Customer Question

Hi. I'm really worried. I owe some tax but from 2004/5 .I'm terrified not about the tax but the potential fines. I also owe from a couple of other years up to 2009. I want to sort this out but am terrified of the outcome. Please help.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  TaxRobin replied 4 years ago.
It is admirable for you to take care of the situation. The penalties can be very high. Sometimes the penalties can be avoided if you file an appeal provided you have a reasonable excuse.
HMRC will not usually accept you have a reasonable excuse if:
you don't have enough money to pay the tax due
you relied on another person to send your return and they didn't
you didn't receive a reminder for your tax return or payment
you didn’t get your online Activation Code, User ID or password in time, but you didn't ask for them until after the tax return deadline

There are no specific reasonable causes but HMRC will agree if the reason is one of the following:
ife-threatening illness, for example a heart attack, or the onset of a disability or a serious mental health condition that prevents you dealing with your tax affairs
the death of a partner shortly before a payment or tax return deadline
unexpected or unforeseeable postal delays
important documents lost, through theft, fire or flood, that can't be replaced in time
late receipt of your online Activation Code, User ID or password even though you asked for them before the tax return deadline

You have an accountant and you may wish to go over your reason with them to see if it is reasonable.

If you cannot pay the taxes in full you may be granted the ability to pay over time. First HMRC will want to know why you cannot pay then what you have done to try and get the money (assets, bank loans....).
They will expect the payments to be made on time if they grant the arrangement.

I hope this information is helpful.