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The self-assessment cut-off date is 31 January 2018 – and if this deadline is met late, HMRC will impose a £100 fine.

A list of the most bizarre excuses received by HMRC for late tax returns has finally been revealed, and here’s our warning to you, it gets weird.

Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) said that last year, around 840k missed their deadline and also expressed concern around expenses as a number of illegitimate claims were submitted, much to their disappointment.

We’re going to dive straight into the wacky world of imaginative business owners across the UK who missed the deadline, and in return, delivered HMRC with a narrative explaining their reasons behind it. Here goes:

1. I couldn’t file my return on time as my wife has been seeing aliens and won’t let me enter the house.

2. I’ve been far too busy touring the country with my one-man play.

3. My ex-wife left my tax return upstairs, but I suffer from vertigo and can’t go upstairs to retrieve it.

4. My business doesn’t really do anything.

5. I spilt coffee on it.

All of the above reasons were rejected.

Angela MacDonald, HMRC director general of customer services, told This is Money:

“Each year we’re making it easier and more intuitive for our customers to complete their tax return.

“But each year we still come across some questionable excuses, whether that’s blaming a busy touring schedule or seeing aliens.

“However, help will always be provided for those who have a genuine excuse for not submitting their return on time.”

250 days of sausage & chips

Now let’s talk expenses. Some of the expense claims which were submitted to HMRC which were rejected include the following:

– A three-piece suite for my partner to sit on when I’m doing my accounts

– Birthday drinks at a Glasgow nightclub

– Vet fees for a rabbit

– Hotel room service – for candles and prosecco

– £4.50 for sausage and chips for 250 days

As a limited company contractor, you will be able to claim certain expenses that have been incurred wholly, and exclusively for the purpose of running your business.

For more information on claiming expenses or submitting your self-assessment tax return – download our Limited Company Guide.

At Gorilla Accounting,we offer anall-inclusive accountancypackage for Contractors and Freelancersfor just £85 plus vat per month.If you have any questions, get in touch with a member of our New Business Team by calling 0330 024 0406 or

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