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bigduckontax, Accountant
Category: Tax
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Hmrc have accepted my self assessment for this year and the

Customer Question

Hmrc have accepted my self assessment for this year and the tax owing is paid. I was not required to return a form prior to this for a number of years since I was paying through Paye.
However, I was dabbling with all sorts of things online during that period. I made some income, but overall lost a huge amount. Do I need to inform hmrc .
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  bigduckontax replied 4 years ago.
Hello, I'm Keith and happy to help you with your question.

Well if you made losses you may need to record them so they can be carried forward, which they can be indefinitely, or possibly set against your tax liability in the years in question. However HMRC may impose penalties for failure to self assess. It is your duty to inform them that you need to self assess even if they do not send you a request so to do at the end of each tax year.

I would be inclined to write to your tax office, don't try to telephone, to ask them for guidance. Not all HMRC staff are ogres and you might find the quite forgiving and helpful, particularly where there is no loss of revenue involved. However, if the matters are complex it might be a good idea to put it in the hands of a trusted, local accountant.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I wrote to hmrc to tell them that I had inherited from my mother and was concerned about last years tax with regards XXXXX XXXXX earnings. I told them that dividends this year would mean the need to self assess this year. They confirmed that I was alright last year but I would need to assess for this year, which has been done accepted and paid to hmrc.

The concern I have refers to a period time, a long time ago, when I was addicted to trying to find an escape from my job through opportunities online. I failed miserably, making a few hundred but losing many thousands. It simply did not occur to me then that there were tax implications. I have no records at all and wonder whether there is any wisdom now in raising my head above the parapet. I

Expert:  bigduckontax replied 4 years ago.
Well if you have no records perhaps not, but I would still advise you to write to HMRC just to put the matter straight, explaining that you kept no supporting data, but did make losses. As you have seen they have behaved perfectly reasonably in your case as quite frankly I would expect. They usually do! I appreciate your comments about letting sleeping dogs lie, but cannot honestly recommend that as a policy.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Wouldn't informing hmrc as you suggest, initiate a review of my tax over the last 10 years or more, rather than just putting the records straight?

If for arguments sake I made 2000 pounds doing various things on and offline during that period and lost double or treble or even more than that overall, is it worth the risk? I did not even see the need to register or pay for being self employed in addition to paye.


I could give hmrc an outline of what I did within an approx time period with what I may have made, but that is all. If hmrc asked me to pay x to set the records straight I would gladly pay up, but ............



Expert:  bigduckontax replied 4 years ago.

Well, I do take your point, but I am obligated to give you the proper text book answer. I accept that advising HMRC could indeed open a can of worms at the end of which probably no revenue would have been lost and just a lot of hassle for you. You will appreciate that I have to leave the ball in your court.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

If hmrc have accepted my tax position for this year and the last, why would they seek to review earlier years unless I inform them?

Expert:  bigduckontax replied 4 years ago.
They might feel that there is a deliberate attempt to evade UK tax which requires investigation and launch an enquiry into your tax affairs. I am sure that this is not the case, but believe me you do not want the hassle and possible expense that such a check up might involve.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Again I understand, but won't this happen anyway, if I inform them?

Expert:  bigduckontax replied 4 years ago.
Not necessarily, nor in the same aggressive manner that an out of the blue investigation might present itself. HMRC not unreasonably take a dim view of tax evasion. They don't like tax avoidance much either, but often there is nothing they can do about that, avoidance is legal, evasion is not!