Figures collated by HMRC show that for the second year running, men are more efficient at submitting their tax returns on time. This contentious statistic is bound to spark debate up and down the country, as will some of the other trends identified.

In reality, the difference between male and female tax returns is negligible, with 232 of every 10,000 male tax returns arriving late, compared with 235 in 10,000 for females.

Other notable patterns singled out by HMRC highlight more significant differences. For example, age really does make a difference – 104 of every 10,000 returns from the over 65s are late, which is considerably better than the 833 per 10,000 for 18-20 year olds.

Londoners came bottom of the pile when looking at tax returns on a geographical basis – 310 of every 10,000 missed the deadline. Top of the class was the more efficient South-West, who filed 184 late returns per 10,000. When broken down across the UK, Northern Ireland came top (178 late per 10,000), followed by Wales (205 per 10,000). England and Scotland were level pegging in last place (233 per 10,000). 

It also seems outdoor types are more organised when it comes to submitting tax returns, with individuals employed in agriculture, fishing and forestry hitting an impressive 62 late submissions per 10,000. Thankfully, accountants were second with 106 for every 10,000!

Whilst these figures can be taken with a pinch of salt when considered in this context, it’s important not to lose sight of you responsibility to submit tax returns in a timely manner. With fixed penalties of £100, it’s well worth keeping organised and submitting in plenty of time.

HMRC are confident that people are becoming more efficient on the whole, and as such the number of late returns is dropping. Online facilities are likely to be a key factor in this, enabling people to access a wealth of information to ensure they stay in control and resolve any queries with time to spare.

If you’re worried about submitting your tax return on time, or are struggling to understand any aspect of the tax you know you’re expected to pay, get in touch with TFMC. We have a wealth of experience dealing with all manner of tax related questions and will be happy to help you resolve any problems.

Tom Cowley
Tom Cowley

Tom brings a wealth of experience to The Financial Management Centre having started his working career as an accounts trainee working his way up to site number one over 20 years ago. He has extensive experience of working in the UK and overseas for a number of prominent groups including Unilever, Shell, Costain, Smit International, Arcelor Mittal and Columbus McKinnon.