How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask bigduckontax Your Own Question
bigduckontax, Accountant
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 4779
Type Your Tax Question Here...
bigduckontax is online now

Hello. I think I may have made a mistake on the self-employment

This answer was rated:

Hello. I think I may have made a mistake on the self-employment spreadsheet I used for my online tax return for tax year 2012/13 (the link between two cells was broken when I did a copy/delete/paste instead of cut/paste) which I submitted in Jan this year. In that tax year I was both employed and self-employed. As a result of the spreadsheet error, the figure I entered for the self-employment income part on the tax return was 6.5k when it should have been 11.5k. (My employed income was about 35k). At the time (Jan 2014) I didn't notice anything wrong with the extra tax value to be paid and have only done so now. I can still amend the return online, and appreciate I will have to pay the extra tax, and may have to pay interest and a fine, but will I face an enquiry and prosecution, as it was a stupid error? Also, how long does it take to resolve? If I do the amendment online, will it give me an immediate calculation of how much more tax to pay? How long does it take to resolve the issue? The spreadsheet I was using to do the calculations ended up very complicated and it was my first time doing self-assessment. Before this I was PAYE employed only and didn't need to do a tax return. I'm very worried about it. Thanks.
Hello, I'm Keith and happy to help you with your question.
Don't worry, every body makes mistakes, even HMRC from, time to time. Just amend your return and await developments. The system will give you a revised assessment and a bill and you can pay that on line if you wish or at your bank or your local Post Office. There is no danger of a prosecution unless HMRC reckon there is tax evasion, but this is unlikely in the extreme. It can be achieved very quickly if you put your mind to it; not instantaneous, but not that far off. You could always appeal any penalty by post anyway.
Please believe me it is not a panic situation; it happens every day. I do hope I have helped set your mind at rest.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hello. If I do it online, is the bill you mentioned generated generated straight away so that I can pay it straight away? How long does it take HMRC to respond, e.g. with deciding to investigate? Thanks.

The revised assessment will be generated quite quickly and can be paid equally as fast. Deciding whether to investigate will take longer unless your company comes up as a random selection. Investigating is expensive and, frankly, relatively uncommon.
Please don't forget to rate me before you leave the Just Answer site.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Could you tell me, as I get cash in hand for my self-employment - private tuition, I don't have receipts from clients as they won't do it for £30 each time. Should I get a cash book and back-date receipts or, if HMRC investigates, is the best way to show my appointment diary?

Also, if I amend my tax return online, should I write to HMRC to explain what happened? Thanks.

Always keep records and a cash book will certainly do; you can use it to support your position if required. Your appointments diary would do; you could always annotate receipts against appointments there.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

If I amend my tax return online, should I write to HMRC to explain what happened?

Is it ok if the cash book entry is not signed by the client? Thanks

Thyere is almost certainly no need, but it always a good idea to keep them in the picture. No requirement for your customers to sign the cash book
bigduckontax and other Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Thank you for your support.