HMRC to stop automatically sending paper Self Assessment returns

Self Assessment customers will no longer receive automatic paper returns as part of HMRC’s efforts to encourage customers to take advantage of the online service. HMRC is working hard to stop the use of unnecessary resources which have an environmental impact, that’s why they would want to reduce the use of paper as much as possible.

Increasing numbers of people expect to engage with HMRC digitally. Last year alone, 94% of HMRC’s customers filed their return online and HMRC recently saw a 110% increase in customers registering to communicate digitally. Last year, HMRC automatically sent out more than 500,000 returns.

Can I still file a paper return?

Yes, taxpayers will still be able to file a paper return but HMRC will encourage those who are able to file online to do so. The environmentally-friendly measure means that from April, instead of automatically receiving a paper return, taxpayers who have filed on paper in the past will now receive a short notice to file. If they still wish to file on paper they can download a blank version of the return or call HMRC to request one.

Where HMRC can identify taxpayers whose personal circumstances mean they cannot file online, they will continue to receive a blank paper return.

Digitisation remains an HMRC priority but they are still committed to giving taxpayers the ability to choose what’s best for them.