close menu

How one person was penalised for filing their Self Assessment tax return too early

by Kobus Van den Bergh | Jun 13, 2016
  • Completing your Self Assessment tax return will likely result in a sigh of relief. It’s best to get your filing done before the 31 January deadline, but if you file your return too early, you may risk being penalised.
    Filing self assessment tax return too early

    Most people fear missing the deadline, but those who are extra organised may face a unique set of circumstances, including unexpected consequences for your tax coding.

    Consistently filing your tax returns too early could see your monthly pay being unexpectedly reduced.

    A recent case documented a taxpayer who filed his return for the year 2013/14 in mid-2014, well ahead of the January 31 2015 deadline. According to his calculations, tax was due. HMRC factored the underpaid tax into his tax code and adjusted his PAYE tax.

    The taxpayer proceeded to complete and submit his Self Assessment return for 2014/15 year in May 2015. While it was eight months ahead of the deadline, tax was due.

    In this instance, it was not only the taxpayer who was particularly efficient. HMRC picked up on his filing habits and contacted his employer. A new tax code was issued, resulting in his pay being further reduced.

    By filing early, this taxpayer was in effect paying two years’ worth of tax simultaneously, as underpaid tax for the 2014/15 year was being paid well ahead of the due date.

    HMRC can automatically adjust a person’s PAYE tax code, in order to collect taxes sooner than when they are actually due. For people subject to Self Assessment, this can be avoided by indicating your choice of paying future taxes via your tax code, via a monthly salary deduction, or once a year, with the Self Assessment season.

    Want to make sure that you don’t pay more tax than you need to? Our team of experienced accountants is on hand to help. Send us an email or give us a call on 0808 141 1643 to find out more.

    We are a professional services company that specialises in cross-border financial and immigration advice and solutions.

    Our teams in the UK, South Africa and Australia can ensure that when you decide to move overseas, invest offshore or expand your business internationally, you’ll do so with the backing of experienced local experts.

    • business plan
      Step-by-step guide to writing a business plan [template included]
      Aug 29, 2019  |  by Scott Brown
    • female-entrepreneur hot air balloon
      Why we need more women-owned businesses
      Jul 16, 2019  |  by Scott Brown
    • crowdfunding lightbulb
      7 ways to finance your small business
      Jul 16, 2019  |  by Scott Brown
    • Businessman looking to the future
      How to get your business ready for the future
      Jun 19, 2019  |  by Scott Brown
    • Guide to UK PAYE tax forms
      A guide to UK PAYE tax forms P45, P60 and P11D
      Jun 14, 2019  |  by Kobus Van den Bergh
    • Cut-taxes
      The 2019/20 tax year changes: What they mean for you
      Jun 10, 2019  |  by Scott Brown
    • confused
      Do you need to complete a Self Assessment tax return?
      May 29, 2019  |  by Kobus Van den Bergh
    • Tax refund money
      11 excellent ways to spend your UK tax refund
      Apr 09, 2019  |  by Kobus Van den Bergh
    • London-business
      The UK still the best country for business in 2019
      Apr 04, 2019  |  by Scott Brown
    • Contractor choosing door
      Contractor insurance: Choosing the right cover for your risks
      Mar 12, 2019  |  by Kobus Van den Bergh

    South Africa

    Cape Town

    Regent Square
    Doncaster Road
    Kenilworth 7708 +27 (0) 21 657 2120


    25 Richefond Circle
    Umhlanga 4320 +27 (0) 31 536 8843

    United Kingdom


    One Croydon
    12-16 Addiscombe Road
    Croydon CR0 0XT +44 (0) 20 7759 7514



    9 Yarra Street
    South Yarra
    VIC 3141 +613 (0) 8651 4500

    Sable International is a trading name of 1st Contact Money Limited (company number 07070528), registered in England and Wales. We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK (FCA no. 517570), the Financial Services Conduct Authority in South Africa (1st Contact Money [PTY] Ltd - FSP no. 41900) and hold an Australian Financial Services Licence issued by ASIC to deal in foreign exchange (1st Contact Group - AFS Licence number 335 126).

    We use cookies to provide the best website experience for you. Using this website means that you agree to this. How we use cookies.