October paper deadline
For those who choose to file paper tax returns through self-assessment, the midnight deadline for 2019/20 is around the corner on 31 October 2020.
In 2018/19, 672,425 paper tax returns were filed by midnight on 31 October 2019, representing just over 6% of all returns submitted in that tax year.
By contrast, 10,450,542 tax returns were filed online.
The first flurry of activity around the deadline for paper filing at the end of October is dwindling every year and will almost certainly be obsolete by the end of the decade.
For accounting periods starting on or after 6 April 2023, all unincorporated businesses and landlords with a turnover of more than £10,000 will need to complete digital returns for income tax.
HMRC has dubbed this stage ‘Making Tax Digital (MTD) for income tax self-assessment’, or MTD for Income Tax Self Assessment (ITSA). The aim is that all taxpayers will be keeping digital records which link seamlessly with government tax systems, perhaps making the self-assessment tax return a thing of the past.