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Women win the battle of the taxes

Press Release   •   Jan 12, 2015 10:24 GMT

Women are more likely than men to send in their tax return on time, an HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) analysis has revealed.

For every 10,000 tax returns received last year by HMRC from men, 394 were after the relevant deadline – 31 October for paper submissions and 31 January for online returns. This compares to 358 late returns for every 10,000 received from women.

As well as a gender gap, HMRC’s analysis showed a significant difference in filing behaviour between age ranges. People aged 18 to 20 were the worst offenders, with 1,085 in every 10,000 filing late. At the other end of the scale, those aged 65 or over were the most punctual, with only 155 out of every 10,000 missing the deadline. HMRC’s analysis found that the older you are, the more likely you are to send in your tax return on time.

In terms of differences between workers in different industries, those in the agriculture, fishing and forestry industry are the star performers, with just 109 in every 10,000 filing late returns. Lawyers and accountants came second (219 late filers per 10,000), with health and social workers (262 per 10,000) in third place. Workers in the information and communication industries fared the worst (390 per 10,000), with administrative and support services not far behind (388 per 10,000) and the construction industry the next worst performing sector (352 per 10,000).

Across the United Kingdom, taxpayers in Northern Ireland were the most punctual (301 per 10,000), followed by those in Wales (346 per 10,000), England (374 per 10,000) and Scotland (391 per 10,000). The figure for the United Kingdom as a whole was 372 late filers per 10,000.

Within the English regions, South West taxpayers were the least likely to miss the deadline (299 per 10,000), followed by the East Midlands (324 per 10,000), Yorkshire and the Humber (337 per 10,000) and the West Midlands (344 per 10,000). By some distance, the worst-performing region was London (512 per 10,000), followed by taxpayers in the North East (380 per 10,000), North West (369 per 10,000), South East (355 per 10,000) and the East of England (346 per 10,000).

HMRC Director General of Personal Tax, Ruth Owen, said:

“Whatever your gender, age, occupation or location, if you haven’t sent in your 2013-14 tax return, you need to take action now.

“HMRC offers a range of help and advice. But don’t leave it until the last minute to contact us. Do it now, and avoid a last-minute rush to beat the deadline.”

You must file your 2013-14 tax return, and pay what you owe, by midnight on 31 January. If you haven’t yet registered for HMRC Online Services, you need to act now, as it involves HMRC posting you an Activation Code and this can take up to ten days to arrive.

Help and advice on filing your return is available from the GOV.UK website at or the Self Assessment helpline on 0300 200 3310 (open 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday, and 8am to 4pm on Saturday).

Customers with general tax queries can also tweet the @HMRCcustomers Twitter feed, from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday. Tweets should not contain any personal information.

Notes for editors

1.  HMRC analysed all 2012-13 tax returns received up to the end of July 2014 (and adjusted the figures to account for returns expected but still not received). The paper deadline for these returns was 31 October 2013 and the online deadline was 31 January 2014.

2.  The full adult age analysis for late filers per 10,000 returns is as follows:

21-30 736
31-40 575
41-50  444
51-60 299
61-64  192
65+  155

3.  The full UK and English regional analysis for late filers per 10,000 returns is as follows:

Scotland  391
England  374
Wales  346
Northern Ireland  301
London  512
North East  380
North West  369
South East  355
East of England  346
West Midlands  344
Yorkshire & Humber  337
East Midlands  324
South West  299

4.  The full industry analysis for late filers per 10,000 returns is as follows:

Information & Communication    390
Administrative & Support Services    388
Construction    352
Transportation & Storage    347
Arts, Entertainment & Recreation    329
Other Professional, Scientific and Technical      322
Education    317
Manufacturing    313
Wholesale and Retail Trade (inc Repair of Motor Vehicles/Motorcycles)309
Accommodation & Food Services   300
Financial, Insurance & Real Estate     286
Human Health and Social Work       262
Legal & Accounting       219
Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing      109

5.  HMRC offers simple tips and advice on filling out tax returns on its Self Assessment Facebook page:

6.  Follow the HMRC Press Office on Twitter @HMRCpressoffice

7.  HMRC's Flickr channel

Issued by HM Revenue & Customs Press Office

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is the UK’s tax authority.

HMRC is responsible for making sure that the money is available to fund the UK’s public services and for helping families and individuals with targeted financial support.

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