How to do a Self Assessment tax return

How to do a Self Assessment tax return

If you’re self employed or a sole trader, you will probably need to submit your Self Assessment tax return this year. Find out what you need to know about your tax return, from if you should submit one to some tips to make completing one quick and easy here.

What is a Self Assessment tax return?

A self assessment tax return is done by HMRC to receive income tax from you, if you received untaxed income in the year. For example, if your income did not come from PAYE or a company payroll. The return is done after the tax year has ended on 5 April 2019.

Your standard personal allowance is £12,500 before tax is deducted, but you still must submit a tax return. This is reduced if you earn over £100,000. If you earned under £1,000 in the last tax year then you don’t need to submit a return, but if you are already registered as self employed or a sole trader then you need to let HMRC know you won’t be filing a return. The best way to do this is to give them a call. You can find out more about personal allowances on the HMRC website.

Make sure you register in time

If you want to fill out your form online, you will need to register on the HMRC website. If you aren’t already registered it takes up to 10 working days to receive the activation code to your account, so make sure you leave enough time. If you’re self employed or a sole trader you will need to register before 5 October 2019 if you started working as such between 6 April 2018 and 5 April 2019.

How to do your Self Assessment tax return online

Filling out the form online is simple; the HMRC website will take you through the process step-by-step. Fill in the details of you or your business to tailor your return to your requirements, and input the cost of different kinds of goods, your total turnover and any other expenses not already covered by the form.

Use an online solution to manage your finances

Using a totally free online accounting solution like Bokio makes doing your Self Assessment tax return simple. When you do all your bookkeeping and invoicing online, Bokio will automatically show you what income is left after your expenses are taken into account. This way, you can see how much taxable income you have earned before you fill in your form. So, you can prepare by putting money aside to pay your bill to HMRC.

Store your receipts online to avoid paperwork

Organising paper receipts and invoices to complete your Self Assessment tax return is stressful and time consuming. Save yourself time by recording your receipts in Bokio and you can forget about storing and sorting through papers again. You can also send unlimited invoices online through Bokio and record them, so your accounting and income are in the same place.

By recording your receipts regularly in Bokio, you can use the Chart of Accounts and search through your stored receipts to make filling in your tax return forms faster and easier.

Remember your National Insurance Contribution amount

Depending on your profits, there are different amounts of National Insurance Contribution you could be paying. You can find out more about this on the HMRC website. Remember to take this into account when you are calculating how much you can expect to pay to HMRC for this tax return.

Know your deadline

If you’re completing a paper tax return, the deadline is midnight 31 October 2019. For online tax returns, and to pay the tax you owe to HMRC, the deadline is midnight 31 January 2020.

Want to use Bokio to manage your accounting?

Create your free account in 2 minutes