As many as 120,000 parents of middle-class families are set to be hit by fines of £100 from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for failing to repay their child benefit.
Parents that fail to register for Self-Assessment and complete an online form to repay the child benefit received in the 2012/13 tax year by 31st January 2014 will be hit with an automatic £100 penalty.
Additional penalties could be applied to those who fail to act, reaching as much as £1,600 for those who file more than 12 months late.
I fully support the imposition of penalties for tax returns submitted late.
I also think anyone paying them is pretty stupid.
That person paying a penalty must be a right idiot. A total simpleton. An imbecile. A fool. A dunce. A twit. An ignoramus. A nincompoop. A ninny.
To incur a penalty for a late return, you must be a boob. Or a nitwit. Or an oaf. Or a twit.
In other words, you are a moron.
I mean, it is not like your average person who has never had to complete a tax return before, or doesn’t understand why you might need to complete a tax return, might be caught off-guard by the need to fill in a tax return for a withdrawal of a state benefit (introduced at the most logical time of three-quarters of the way through a tax year).
This applies especially to single parents who happen to get caught by the high income child benefit charge. You, madam (it is always the neoliberal women who selfishly keep custody of the children), are a moron for not noticing such a fact in between working full-time, perhaps multiple jobs, and looking after your family with no support whatsoever.
And, do you know what? If you haven’t actually been told by HMRC that you might be affected by this, that makes you even more stupid! You total clod for requiring to be told!
What, your salary is under £50k so you thought you were ok? You overlooked your benefits-in-kind, or some other income in the year, or your small pay rise tipped you over the £50k late in the year and you weren’t aware of the apportionment rules? You buffoon!
I mean, everybody knows exactly what they need to do in respect of tax: how much they should be paying and what they need to tell the tax man. That is why that PAYE mess a couple of years back affected nobody whatsoever. It certainly didn’t affect hundreds of thousands of people who would certainly all be complete cretins for not realising.
And it is not like this adversely affects those who do not do things online either. I mean, it is not like many people fail to submit their return on time because they are digitally excluded, maybe because they live in a rural broadband-free area, submitting a paper return despite the fact that the paper deadline has long passed.
I mean, if this sort of thing actually affects real people, that would illustrate just how out-of-touch and ignorant I am in calling people stupid for failing to submit their return on time.
And it could not possibly be true that I am out-of-touch or ignorant.
As somebody who obviously knows what it is like to be a practising accountant, I can tell you that all my clients know exactly what they need me to do in every conceivable circumstance. And if they don’t they are stupid and it is completely their fault for not telling me that there was some sort of tax issue they should have told me to sort out.
So, I demand that you get your tax return done on time. The State has every right to persecute you if you do not.
Sure, you may owe nothing. You might even be owed a refund for your measly income that barely covers your bills. Regardless, The State has the moral right to wipe out all your savings and bankrupt you should you be too busy or unaware (ie too moronic) to notice that you need to complete your tax return.
And please don’t ask me to do it – my professional indemnity insurance no longer covers me for tax advisory work. Apparently I’m “not suitably qualified in any way to advise on tax matters”.