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Sam, Accountant
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 14164
Experience:  26 HMRC expertise, PAYE, Self Assessment ,Residency, Rental Income, Capital Gains, CIS ask for Sam Tax
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Hi about 15 years ago I got a tax assesment for about £5000

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about 15 years ago I got a tax assesment for about £5000
I hadnt made that amount of money, never mind owing it.
I was self employed,
After the threatening letters, I just hid away, never claimed any money, never made money, just enough to survive, marriage breakdown worry the whole lot.
then I emigrated to thailand for 6 years, living with my new thai wifes family, them supporting me.
lasr year we returned to the uk, with no money, my wife works part time, and I buy and sell a few things online to survive.
I want to come clean with the tax man, but unsure of the consequences of doing so, or how to do it

Thanks for your question and for asking for me.

I would take the plunge and get registered for self employment - as your buying and selling things online constitutes working for yourself.

This will then at least get you on the right track from now, and ensure that this does not add to the existing position.

You can either do this over the phone telephone number

Or online

I would then sit tight and see whether HMRC get ion touch regarding this position from 15 years ago. There is a high chance, due to fact computer systems have changed and the way in which debt management pursue for old debts - that this amount has dropped off the system and has not been carried forward onto the newer systems - but this I cannot guarantee - as many old debts did in fact get carried forward, But in your favour, the fact you have not been in the UK for last 6 years, so not even in the country for this debt to be pursued, will work in your favour.

However, if the debt is still on record, I am afraid even though you advise it was wrong, and the tax asked for was more than the amount you had even earned, its too late to ask for this to be amended to a correct amount, as HMRC are not in a position to do this, due to the age of the debt. But at this time, I would urge you to seek the help of a local accountant who could appeal this amount on the basis that it was disproportionate to the amount you earned, and they may be able to argue the case for you on legislation factors.
If worse case scenario, they can negotiate with HMRC for you regarding this debt along with getting a payment plan put in place for you that's affordable to you.

And put in place an accountant to file the future self assessment tax returns for you with this new venture. That way the problem will not occur again.

Find one local to you that is familiar with tax debts (old ones) and self assessment and self employment for the new business.

But most of all try not to worry - the fact you wish to put matters right is the first step, and if you need any more advise or support - then do come back to Just Answer and you can always ask for me "Sam Tax" in your opening post.

Do feel free to ask any follow up questions



Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Sorry, meant to saythat I am wanting to start a small business online

with the little amount of money I have and could borrow

should I then register with hmrc or speak to a local tax advisor first?

Thanks again


Then when you start get registered for self employment as advised.

And speak to a local adviser when
1) HMRC show an indication about pursuing for this old debt OR
2) AT the first year end - so after the first 5th April, when your first self assessment tax return will be due, from starting this new business

Let me know if you need anything else, feel free to ask any more follow up questions on this topic, and if you could rate the level of service, I have provided, it would be appreciated, as this ensures I am credited for my time


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