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Tax penalties and interest relief

It is quite understandable that tax affairs have taken a backseat at the moment and some taxpayers have struggled and failed to file their 2019 income tax returns on time.  Given the other stresses on our lives, such as childcare, we too have found it difficult to prioritise some work.

The end result is that some tax returns will be filed late.

We have anticipated this and have requested a deferral for filing of some taxpayers returns.  Thankfully, Inland Revenue have followed up with advice to us that they have relaxed their deadlines in a general manner.  These include:-

  • Late filing penalties will be waived for income tax returns
  • Remission of interest imposed on late payments of income tax due 7 April 2020
  • 4 year time bar – so long as the return is filed by 31 May it will be treated as filed by 31 March

So as far as your 2019 income tax goes the underlying message is “don’t panic”.

Further assistance has been offered by way of reducing the minimum amounts required to be paid under instalment arrangements.

Take a look at the IR page to get a feel for what they propose and, if you need to talk it through, then give us a call.


Please note that Inland Revenue consider PAYE and GST to be quite different from income tax and will expect payment in full on the due date.  After all these are other people’s taxes and we are merely the custodians of these.

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