Accountants who have made the transition to HMRC’s electronic filing system have been set back by news that HMRC will not be ready to accept post-31 March 2011 returns until October when it will update its online portal.
HMRC have blamed the delay on the need to update software with the new Corporation Tax rate following a reduction on 6th April.
The HMRC service availability notice explained that the new rates will only affect returns with accounting periods that end on or after 1 April 2011 with filing dates of 1 April 2012 or later. Changes will take effect once the Finance Bill 2011 receives Royal Assent, which is expected in July 2011. Corporation Tax Online will then be updated in October with the new rates but in the meantime they will use the old rates.
The HMRC notice stated: “If you can’t wait and have an urgent need to file your return before then, please contact your HMRC office for further advice. HMRC would like to apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.”
This news will upset those who took the trouble to change to iXBRL and efiling only to discover they will now have to wait until October to file returns.
There have already been some unhappy posts on AccountingWEB’s HMRC Working Together eGroup, expressing a shared opinion of HMRC’s complete lack of organisation.
AccountingWEB Tax Editor Rebecca Benneyworth commented: “It was always clear that when efiling became mandatory the October changeover date was going to cause problems. It’s an unacceptable situation that was not properly identified and HMRC needs to find a better way to do it.”