HM Revenue and Customs
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2,828 ’elf Assessments filed on Christmas Day

More than 31,000 Self Assessment customers submitted their tax return for the 2020 to 2021 tax year over the festive period.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has revealed that 2,828 customers filed their Self Assessment tax return on Christmas Day, compared to 2,700 in 2020.

For thousands of customers, filing their tax return on 25 December has become part of their Christmas tradition, with 227 choosing to complete their Self Assessment between 12:00 and 12:59.

Find out more about Self Assessment

In total, more than 31,000 customers submitted their 2020 to 2021 tax return between Christmas Eve and Boxing Day – getting it in early ahead of the deadline on 31 January 2022, and most festive filers completed their return on 24 December:

  • Christmas Eve: 19,802 tax returns were filed. The peak time for filing was 11:00 to 11:59 when 2,914 returns were received
  • Christmas Day: 2,828 tax returns were filed. The peak time for filing was 12:00 to 12:59 when 227 returns were received
  • Boxing Day: 8,641 tax returns were filed. The peak time for filing 12:00 to 12:59 when 821 returns were received

Myrtle Lloyd, HMRC’s Director General for Customer Services, said:

Filling in a tax return won’t have been on many people’s to-do lists for Christmas, but please don’t leave it until the end of January either. We have videos, guidance and helpsheets to support you – just search ‘Self Assessment’ on GOV.UK to find out more.

HMRC has created resources to help customers complete their tax return including a playlist on YouTubewebinars and helpsheets and guidance available on GOV.UK.

Some Self Assessment customers may feel worried or anxious about paying any tax owed by the deadline. If they cannot pay in full, customers can set up their own Time to Pay arrangement online if they:

  • have filed their 2020 to 2021 tax return
  • owe less than £30,000
  • are within 60 days of the payment deadline
  • plan to pay their debt off within the next 12 months or less

If customers owe more than £30,000, or need longer to pay, they should call the Self Assessment Payment Helpline on 0300 200 3822.

HMRC urges everyone to be alert if they are contacted out of the blue by someone asking for money or personal information. Customers should always type in the full online address to get the correct link for filing their Self Assessment return online securely and free of charge. HMRC sees high numbers of fraudsters emailing, calling or texting people claiming to be from the department. If in doubt, HMRC advises not to reply directly to anything suspicious, but to contact them straight away and to search GOV.UK for ‘HMRC scams’.

Further information

The number of customers who filed their 2019 to 2020 tax returns over the festive period:

  • 24 December 2020: 20,200 tax returns filed with 2,892 filing between 11:00 to 11:59
  • 25 December 2020: 2,700 tax returns filed with 214 filing between 14:00 to 14:59
  • 26 December 2020: 8,500 tax returns filed with 858 filing between 15:00 to 15:59

Find out more about how to declare taxable COVID-19 support in your tax return if you are self-employed, in a partnership or run a business.

If this is your first time completing an online tax return, you may be asked additional questions to prove your identity. To answer these questions, please have as many of the following to hand where relevant, when making your claim:

  • your UK passport
  • Northern Ireland (DVA – issued) driving licence
  • information held on your credit file (such as loans, credit cards or mortgages)
  • your Self Assessment tax return (within the last 3 years)
  • your tax credit claim
  • your P60
  • one of your 3 most recent payslips
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