More than 850,000 filed online tax return on HMRC deadline day

Written by Sam Trendall on 2 February 2023 in News

Department reveals that tens of thousands completed annual process ‘with minutes to spare’

Credit: Aleza/Pixabay

HM Revenue and Customs has revealed that more than 800,000 citizens went online to file their annual tax returns on the final day for doing so – including tens of thousands who completed the process with just “minutes to spare”.

Midnight on Tuesday marked the cut-off point for filing self-assessment tax returns for the 2021/22 year. Figures published by HMRC reveal that more than 11.7 million returns had been submitted by this point, including 861,085 during the final 24 hours before the deadline. A total of 36,767 citizens completed their return after 11pm: the last 60 minutes of the 10-month period during which returns can be filed. 

The hour between 4pm and 5pm – during which 68,452 completed their annual tax filing – was the busiest of the final day, according to HMRC.

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The total number of submissions comprised 11.4 million expected returns, and around 300,000 that were received from those that were filing for the first time, or were otherwise unsolicited. With HMRC records indicating that more than 12 million returns were due, the tax agency believes that there are about 600,000 peoples that should have submitted an annual calculation but failed to do so as yet.

Anyone in this position is encouraged to rectify this “as soon as possible or risk facing a penalty”.

Almost 11 million of the expected returns were completed using HMRC’s online service – equating to 96.2% of the total. With only 385,296 paper returns received, the department’s work to encourage citizens to use web services where possible appears to have succeeded.

Myrtle Lloyd, the department’s director general for customer services, said: “Thank you to the millions of customers and agents who got their tax returns in on time. Customers who have yet to file, and who are concerned that they will not be able to pay in full, may be able to spread the cost of what they owe with a payment plan. Search ‘pay my Self Assessment’ on GOV.UK to find out more.”



About the author

Sam Trendall is editor of PublicTechnology. He can be reached on

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