Beware the seasonal tax scams


HMRC has warned taxpayers completing their 2020/21 tax returns to ‘be on their guard’ and stay vigilant in regard to tax-related scams.

Nearly 800,000 tax scams were reported in the last year, HMRC revealed, stating that fraudsters use self assessment returns to attempt to steal money or personal information from taxpayers – in the past year alone, the agency received almost 360,000 bogus tax rebate referrals.

This coming week, HMRC are set to send more than four million emails and SMS messages to self assessment taxpayers, prompting them to think about how they intend to pay their tax bill in advance of the 31st January 2022 deadline, and is also warning taxpayers ‘not to be taken in’ by malicious emails, phone calls or texts which might easily be mistaken for genuine HMRC communications.

Commenting on the issue, Myrtle Lloyd, Director General for Customer Services at HMRC, said: ‘Scams come in many forms. Some threaten immediate arrest for tax evasion, others offer a tax rebate. Contacts like these should set alarm bells ringing, so if you are in any doubt whether the email, phone call or text is genuine, you can check the ‘HMRC scams’ advice on GOV.UK and find out how to report them to us.’

If you need to file a self assessment, and have yet yet done so, do get in touch with our tax advisory teams in Cardiff, Newport and Bristol – our rates for a simple self assessment return start at £140 + VAT.


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