Taxpayers sent wrong penalty warning

More than 10,000 people have been sent incorrect penalty notices by HM Revenue & Customs stating that they are incurring costly daily penalties.

The tax office has admitted that it sent out 12,000 penalty warning notices to people who had called the tax office and had been told that they no longer need to complete a tax return, because their tax affairs could be dealt with through the PAYE system.

The letters sent out by mistake state that these taxpayers are incurring new daily penalties of £10 for not completing their tax forms.  However, a spokesperson for HMRC said that this was not correct;

"Anyone who gets a penalty warning notice and knows they have spoken to us and we agreed that they don't need to complete a return can simply ignore it," a spokesman said. "We are writing to them to apologise and explain."

The £10 daily fines are new penalties for those who are required to fill in a self-assessment tax returns and have not done so on time.  According to HMRC’s records, there are 650,000 people who still need to fill in Self Assessment forms.  The fines commence on 1st May and all those on HMRC's records who did not complete a self-assessment form, as expected by the tax authority, received a letter informing them of the new penalty in February or March.

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