Vale & West Chartered Accountants Blog

Taxpayers don’t check their HMRC personal account

Recent research has found that almost half of UK workers have never checked their personal tax account on HM Revenue & Customs’ (HMRC) portal despite almost a third saying they want to understand their tax affairs better.

HMRC introduced the Personal Tax Account in 2015 to make it easier for people to view and manage their personal tax affairs online, as it allows taxpayers to check their state pension, submit claims for tax rebates, file tax returns and manage tax credits.

However, only 38 per cent of the general tax population have accessed their account multiple times. People aged between 25 and 34 age bracket are the most active when it comes to online tax affairs, with 43 per cent of them using the online platform.

Moreover, of those who do use the portal, almost one third are under the erroneous impression that the platform shows where tax is spent, and 22 per cent believe it can be used to complain about how much tax they pay.

Interestingly, those approaching retirement are the least likely to have checked their personal tax account, and more than half of those who are slightly younger – in the 45 to 54 age range – have not checked their account, even though it can be used to keep up-to-date with state pension contributions.

As one of the study’s authors commented, more than 20 per cent of people do not think they earn enough to warrant looking at their personal tax account, which means that thousands of workers could be missing out by not checking that pension contributions and tax code are correct.

He added that it is important for everyone to understand and manage their personal tax affairs, as this puts them in control and keeps them informed about their annual return.

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