Tax Return: Who Needs to Complete a Self Assessment
By Diana Hurta
30 Nov -0001

The tax year in UK is from 6 April to 5 April the following year. Self Assessment is a system HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) uses to collect Income Tax.

Tax is usually deducted automatically from wages, pensions and savings. People and businesses with other income must report it in a tax return.

Who must send a Tax Return

You must send a tax return if, in the last tax year (6 April to 5 April), you were:

  • self-employed as a ‘sole trader’ and earned more than £1,000
  • a partner in a business partnership

You will not usually need to send a return if your only income is from your wages or pension. But you may need to send one, if you have any other untaxed income, such as:

  • money from renting out a property
  • tips and commission
  • income from savings, investments and dividends
  • foreign income

Check if you need to send a tax return if you’re not sure on GOV.UK website.

Grants and payments from schemes to support businesses and self-employed individuals during coronavirus (COVID-19) are taxable. If you received a payment to support you during COVID-19, you may need to report this on your tax return.

Registering and sending a return

You must register for Self Assessment if you have to send a tax return and did not send one last year. There are different ways to register if you are:

  • self-employed or a sole trader,
  • not self-employed,
  • registering a partner or partnership.

You can register for Self Assessment online or post a form to HMRC. Once you have registered, you can send your tax return online, or use commercial software or paper forms.


HMRC must receive your tax return and any money you owe by the deadline.

Self Assessment


Register for Self Assessment

5 October

Paper tax returns

Midnight 31 October

Online tax returns

Midnight 31 January

Pay the tax you owe

Midnight 31 January

There’s an additional payment deadline of 31 July if you make advance payments towards your bill.

You’ll usually pay a penalty if you’re late.