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Twenty years since HMRC took its first step into the digital age with the birth of electronic Self Assessment (SA), the department is reminding customers to complete their online tax return ahead of the 31 January deadline.

In 1997, the Inland Revenue introduced an electronic option for tax returns. Agents were sent floppy disks to help complete their SA which was then returned to the department. This year, two decades on, more than 10 million customers are expected to complete their tax return online.

Angela MacDonald, HMRC Director General of Customer Services, said:

Twenty years ago, filing Self Assessment returns on a mobile phone would have been unimaginable. Today, completing your Self Assessment via your Personal Tax Account can be done anywhere or at any time; on the bus, in a coffee shop or while watching TV, using your phone, a tablet or a computer. With our videos and webinars with hints, tips and live support it’s now easier than ever before.

The deadline for returning your Self Assessment, and paying any tax owed, is 31 January 2018 – do it now and enjoy the festive period.

HMRC now has online webchats, live webinars, YouTube videos and social media support for customers which can be accessed at any time, and on any device, to help them fill in and file their returns.

Notes for Editors

  • The deadline for Self Assessment returns is 31 January.
  • If you are filing your 2016/17 Self Assessment return online for the first time, you will need to create a Government Gateway account if you haven’t already got one. It’s easy to do here
  • Help is available from the GOV.UK website or from the Self Assessment helpline on 0300 200 3310.
  • Always type in full online address to obtain the correct link to file your SA return online securely and free of charge.
  • An audio clip for broadcast is available upon request.
  • Follow HMRC on Twitter @HMRCgovuk
  • HMRC’s Flickr channel can be found here

Any press enquiries, please contact:

Patrick O’Brien
Tel: 03000 585 024
Email: patrick.o’

Out of hours
Tel: 07860 359544

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