As the clock approaches midnight on January 31 to fill out self-assessment tax returns, it is estimated that about two million people have left them until the last minute.
Last year, nearly 750,000 people were faced with a £ 100 fine for being late.
Some of them had creative (and unsuccessful) excuses for being late. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) revealed some “weird” reasons they heard last year:
- My mother-in-law is a witch and cursed me
- I have too little to get to the mailbox
- I was too busy – my first maid left, my second maid stole from me, and my third maid studied very slowly
- Our junior employee registered our self-assessment client by mistake because he did not wear glasses
- My cauldron broke and my fingers were too cold to type
HMRC said it would provide assistance to those who have real reason not to file their return on time.
It could be the death of a partner or family member, a serious illness, a fire, a flood or theft, a computer crash, or problems with HMRC online services.
But since the deadline for 2017/18 tax returns is fast approaching, some people simply cannot leave it until the pressure really changes.
Others admit that procrastination is to blame.
If this applies to you, here are some tips for procrastinators from performance expert Moira Scott:
- Try to minimize interrupts, such as email notifications. Putting the phone into flight mode or somewhere to work where you won’t be disturbed will also help
- Being “busy” is easier than doing what we avoid. Instead of performing the task, we instead do other things and deceive ourselves that we do not have time. You have time. You just need to do it.
HMRC reminds people that if their tax return is delayed, they will receive a penalty, even if they do not owe a single tax.
And the longer the delay, the greater the penalty.
However, this is not the only extreme day on Thursday – something that some football fans found useful.