PLEASE NOTE: The charity TaxAid advises only those people on low incomes whose problems cannot be resolved with HMRC.

Problems paying your tax?

Many people are unable to pay their tax on time. They may worry about going bankrupt, losing their home or job. Some worry they may go to prison (though in 2019 HMRC prosecuted 600 people and these cases involved substantial fraud often combined with serious criminality).

When confronted with a a tax debt, the worst thing is to ignore the matter. Your situation may not be as bad as you think, but you should act as soon as you can.

HMRC have made clear that they want to work with those who are struggling with tax debts and want to help in finding a way of paying off the debt as quickly as possible. They will contact you by telephone, post or SMS text. It is important that you respond to these communications otherwise HMRC cannot know if you need help or are simply refusing to pay. The support HMRC can provide is tailored to individual needs and circumstances.

You may become aware that you owe tax in one of the following ways:

Please do not ignore a letter or demand from HMRC which states that tax is due, as this may make things worse. Often, a quick response can reduce the size of the problem.