You may think that the Tax Return filing deadline is a long way off but, as the saying goes, time flies.

For the year ended 5 April 2021 the tax return filing deadline for online submissions is 31 January 2022 and for paper submissions is 31 October 2021.  The number of tax returns filed online significantly outweighs those submitted on paper and amounts to over 90% of the Returns expected to be filed.

For the 2020/21 tax year the number of tax returns expected to be filed will be around 12,000,000, 11,000,000 of which are likely to be filed electronically.

It’s possibly no surprise to hear that the peak hour for submitting electronic tax returns is normally between 4pm – 5pm on 31 January (or the Friday before where it falls on a weekend).  31 January this year was slightly different due to the 1 month extension to the filing deadline but as tax payments were still due by the end of January, HM Revenue & Customs still saw a surge in submissions on the Friday prior to the end of January.


You may however be surprised to hear that 63,500 people submitted their tax return on 6 April 2021, the day after the end of the 2020/21 tax year and over 1,000,000 Returns have already been submitted so far this tax year.

There are numerous benefits to early submission, not least to give more time for planning and if a refund is due it’s often paid within a few weeks of submission.  If you think your tax liability for 2020/21 will be lower than the prior year and you have a second payment on account to make by 31 July 2021, it’s worth preparing and submitting the return before 31 July 2021 so that the payment on account can be reduced to the lower level.  Further, early submission doesn’t bring forward the tax payment dates and once done, it’s one less job to worry about.

For more information on our Tax department contact our Tax Partner, Amanda Gunter,  who is based in our Taunton office.