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Where to go for tax help

We've updated this guide on 5th October 2021

If you need tax help, there are a few places you can go. First of all, let’s work out what kind of help you need. Here are 6 common questions about sorting your taxes and how to solve them. 

1. I need help with my tax return

This is pretty simple. When it comes to your tax return, you can either get this done:

2. I’m not able to pay my tax bill 

If you need help with paying your tax bill, it’s best to go to HMRC directly. They’ll be able to potentially put you on a payment plan to help you avoid any late payment penalties. But it depends on your reasons for not being able to pay on time:

  • COVID-19 – did you know that you can defer your Payment on Account in 2020? For anyone unable to meet the 31st July deadline, you have until 31st January 2021 to pay your tax bill in full
  • Non-COVID-19 related – if your bill is less than £10,000, you should be able to get a payment plan set up

Speak to HMRC via the Self Assessment Payment Helpline on 0300-200-3822

3. I can’t find my UTR number

If you’ve registered with HMRC for your Self Assessment in the past, you’ll be able to retrieve your Unique Taxpayer Reference number. If you’ve not previously registered, you won’t be able to find it because it doesn’t exist yet! To create one, register for Self Assessment here

Otherwise, you can find it:

  • On the front page of one of your previous tax returns
  • On any Self Assessment documents that HMRC has sent you
  • Under the Self Assessment section of your HMRC online account

4. I don’t agree with a tax decision

Sometimes, HMRC may make a decision that you don’t think is fair. In this case, you’re allowed to appeal it in one of the following scenarios:

  • Something to do with your tax bill
  • A claim for tax relief
  • A penalty you’ve been asked to pay
  • Any request to see your business documents or to disclose information – although bear in mind that HMRC’s powers to view your information are being consistently extended to prevent wrongdoing and evasion

If you want to appeal a decision, you can contact HMRC on any of the following helplines

5. I need free tax help

When you’re on a low income, there are resources available to provide you with free help and advice when it comes to your taxes. Low income is deemed to be £20,000 per year or less. 

TaxAid is available 10am-4pm Monday to Friday on 0345-120-3779, or you can have a look at their free resources on their website. It’s a handy choice if accounting fees are out of budget. 

6. I’m over 60 and need a hand with my taxes

Similar to TaxAid, over 60s who receive less than £380 per month (the equivalent of £20,000 per year) can seek free tax advice from the charity Tax Help for Older People. You can use their Advice Service or read through their resources privately. 

They’re open 9am-5pm Monday to Friday and can be contacted by phone on 01308-488-066.

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