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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

Penalties for failure to file on time: types of penalties for failure to file on time: occasional returns and returns for periods of 6 months or more: initial fixed penalties

This page currently only applies to returns required for income tax, capital gains tax, bank payroll tax, the registered pension schemes legislation, annual tax on enveloped dwellings and stamp duty reserve tax. It does not apply to the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS), see CH62300+.

A person is liable to an initial fixed penalty of £100 when they fail to deliver a return or other document by the filing date, see CH61140.

The person becomes liable to the penalty on the penalty date, see CH61160. The penalty date is the day after the filing date. It is the date on which a person first becomes liable to a penalty for failing to file a return, see CH61180.


Samantha’s 2013-14 ITSA return is due to be filed electronically on 31 January 2015. This is the filing date. If Samantha does not file the return by the filing date, she is liable to an initial fixed penalty of £100 on 1 February 2015.

Note that, subject to exceptions detailed at SAM121025, there are two filing dates for ITSA returns

  • 31 October for paper returns, and
  • 31 January for returns filed electronically.

Until the filing date is confirmed by either a paper return being filed or a return being filed electronically, you should use 31 January as the filing date.

Any late filing penalties that have been charged will be cancelled where we agree to withdraw the notice to file a self assessment tax return, see CH61700.