How To Rip Off The Inland Revenue (Not That We'd Condone That Sort Of Thing Of Course)
Online everything is the future – you’d probably be gawping at some kind of parchment by candlelight instead of reading this dazzling item if you didn’t agree. Certainly in terms of collecting taxation in the UK, the interweb is where it’s at and record numbers of us have filed our returns remotely and paperlessly from our computers this year.
But, as with almost anything that’s government-flavoured, there have been snags and hitches. There have almost certainly been snitches too but that’s another story. Last minute online taxpayers may have missed the January 31st deadline due to a registration glitch, but they won’t be fined for it.
In order to complete your tax return online you had to register, and that involved inputting a PIN that was sent to you through the post. The deadline for applying for this PIN was January 21st, ten whole days before the tax deadline itself, and something that the Inland Revenue failed to properly publicise. Anyone trying to amble on to the IR site for the first time and throw some numbers around at 11.40pm on Saturday night would have been bitterly disappointed.
But the IR have announced an amnesty and late payers will not cop for a £100 fine if they claim that their PIN didn’t arrive. So what if your PIN did arrive on time but you couldn’t be arsed to submit your tax return until, say, today? Well, if you were tell a little white lie and say that your PIN got stuck in the post, you could probably avoid the £100 fine. We’re not condoning that you lie to the taxman of course. We’d never do that sort of thing – it would be madness.