News story

Paperless Self Assessment moves a step closer

HMRC has announced plans for paperless Self Assessment tax returns in a consultation document published today.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


Under paperless Self Assessment (SA), customers will receive communications from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) electronically, rather than by letter.

Changes to existing tax law are needed to enable HMRC to offer this improved service. The consultation, HMRC Digital Strategy – legislative changes to enable paperless Self Assessment, is seeking views on the proposed changes to legislation.

David Gauke, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, said:

HMRC’s Digital Strategy will make processes like SA faster and simpler. It will deliver the tax system for the 21st century that taxpayers expect.

The vast majority of HMRC’s SA customers already file electronically, but only 25% of their dealings with HMRC are online. Paperless SA will allow customers to do it all online.

The consultation document HMRC Digital Strategy – legislative changes to enable paperless Self Assessment is published online. The deadline for responses is 27 December 2013.

Digital Strategy

HMRC published its Digital Strategy in December 2012. As part of that strategy, HMRC set out its proposals for paperless SA. This involves upgrading the current HMRC SA Online service to provide a more complete, end-to-end digital experience for customers.

Customers who choose this option will be sent a message telling them about specific SA products, for example, statutory notices, reminders and statements in their online HMRC account. Specific types of communication will be introduced via paperless SA at the most appropriate time, as part of a staged approach.

Published 27 November 2013