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Over £5bn of late paid taxes in March as coronavirus crisis bites

Publications featured in include: Accountancy Today
  • Value of overdue tax expected to climb rapidly in April and May

New data released today shows HMRC added £5.05bn of late paid taxes to its debt collection systems in March 2020, as the effects of the coronavirus crisis started to bite, our research shows.

This is above the monthly average of late paid taxes over the last year at £4.39bn.

Sean Glancy, VAT partner in our London office, comments: “If HMRC added £5bn of late paid taxes to its systems in March then just think how much could be added in April and May.”

“More and more businesses and individuals are being forced to delay tax payments and with an economic rebound still uncertain, this trend will likely continue.”

“Levels of overdue tax are going to get much worse as we head into summer and Autumn.”

“The VAT deferment period ends on June 30 and from that date businesses will have to start paying VAT again, which could lead to a spike in overdue taxes.”

“HMRC has done a lot to help businesses. From the end of June, HMRC has promised to be more lenient in accepting businesses who apply to enter into arrangements that restructure tax payments - but this would also lead to more overdue tax.”

There were already 647,770 taxpayers in Time To Pay arrangements in March 2020.