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Do you need to submit a self-assessment tax return?

For those in employment, tax is automatically collected via wages, pensions & savings so it’s not worth worrying about, which is nice.

But for those of us who have other income streams (like self-employment) then you need to let HMRC know how much you are earning so they know how much tax you owe them. This is done via the Self-Assessment (SA).

The SA covers your earnings from April 6th to April 5th the following year (this is known as the tax year). Awkward dates I know, but that dates back to 1900 and it’s too late to change it now. I can tell you all about it if you're interested … no? oh, ok then.

Now, the HMRC are quite nice in that they let you earn some money tax-free (currently £11,850 for years 2018-2019), but if you earn any more than £1,000 then you still need to tell them about it.

There are other circumstances when you need to submit an SA: (sorry, its a long list)

  • You have a rental property that earned you more than £2,500.

  • You have earned more than £2,500 in other income that hasn’t already been taxed (like tips or commission).

  • You have savings, investments, dividends or shares that have earned you more than £10,000 before tax.

  • You need to prove you’re self employed to claim tax free childcare

  • You want to make voluntary Class 2 NI payments – these help you to qualify for benefits (like the state pension)

  • You made a profit from selling an asset (like shares or a second home) – this means you may need to pay capital gains tax.

  • Your or your partner's income was over £50,000 and one of you claimed child benefit.

  • You have had income from abroad that you need to pay tax on, or you lived abroad and had UK income.

  • You have had more than £100,000 of taxable income.

  • You were a company director and didn’t’ get and pay or benefits (unless the company was a non-profit organisation).

  • You were the trustee of a trust or registered pension scheme, or your state pension was more than your personal allowance (only if you started getting your pension before April 6th 2016).

  • If the HMRC have told you to!! If you feel that you don’t need to fill one in, then you need to call them to talk about it … don’t ignore it!

If you are still not sure that you need to send a SA, then follow this link:

Please do get in touch if you have questions about this or any other financey bits and pieces.

Thanks for reading!

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