Two fingers of taxNovember 28, 2015
My theory is that you should do your tax return in bite sized pieces, none of them taking more than the time it takes to drink two fingers of scotch.
I would also like, just once in my life, to get my tax return in before January 31st!
So walk with me as I complete my tax return, and think about getting on with yours. The first thing* – the absolute first thing – to do is to check you can still get into the HMRC website. Because you’re too late, now, to do a paper return, and it’s not December yet so there’s still time to get yourself registered with HMRC or get new passwords or whatever if you don’t have access.
I went to gov.uk and followed the links to self assessment. And, lo! My computer automatically filled in my HMRC registration codes and I was online! Yay me!
The system also has a built in security feature which tells you when you last logged on to it (presumably so that if it tells you that you logged on at four am you can investigate who has been impersonating you). When did I last log in?
31st January, of course! But I filled in the first page, and my tax return is 1% complete already and it isn’t even December yet. Two fingers of tax, two fingers of scotch.
*unless you use an accountant, in which case the very first thing to do is speak to your accountant. Imagine all their clients pass them a carrier bag full of receipts on January 31st… If you haven’t given them all the necessary records yet, I suggest you have a conversation with them about what they’ll need from you if you want them to do your return this year. They may need more than two fingers of scotch from you – I recommend a bottle of Talisker at least!