COVID-19: Employer returns accepted via email
29 May 2020: Employers can file their Appendix 4, 7A and 7B end-of-year reports by email, HMRC has confirmed.
In light of the difficulties firms are facing in filing returns via the post due to the coronavirus pandemic, HMRC will now accept a number of employer returns by email. The move has been welcomed by ICAEW’s Tax Faculty who have outlined the key information employers need to know about the change in policy.
Appendix 4 reports
The Appendix 4 reporting deadline has been extended to 31 July 2020 and employers can send their Appendix 4 reports to: email@example.com
To ensure that reports reach the correct team, senders should put “App 4 report” in the subject field.As the Expat Helpline is experiencing a high volume of calls, HMRC is recommending that customers also use this email address for contact rather than the phone.
Appendix 7A returns
Appendix 7A returns can also be submitted via firstname.lastname@example.org – use “App 7A return” in the subject field.
Alternatively, those with Shared Workspace access can use that route for filing Appendix 7A Returns.
If any Appendix 7A returns have already been sent to email address email@example.com, these will be accepted and there is no need to resubmit them.
As previously reported, the deadline for submitting Appendix 7A returns has been extended due to the coronavirus pandemic, but only to 31 May. If this date cannot be met, then HMRC will consider claims for reasonable excuse on a case-by-case basis.
Appendix 7B returns
In a temporary measure, Appendix 7B returns should currently be submitted via: firstname.lastname@example.org
This email address is strictly for submitting Appendix 7B returns, and the team that manages it will not respond by email. HMRC is looking to arrange an auto-response acknowledgement email to tell employers that their return has been received.
The extended deadline for filing Appendix 7B returns is also 31 May and if this date cannot be met, HMRC will consider claims for reasonable excuse on a case-by-case basis..
HMRC warning on risks of email
HMRC is very concerned about the risks of using email, as they can be intercepted, altered and malicious codes inserted. It is crucial for HMRC that it communicates only with established contacts at their correct email addresses.
Senders are advised to use encryption to protect the information. Those who choose to do this are asked to provide the password to HMRC in a separate email.
HMRC asks that senders should use email only if they, or their client if the sender is an authorised agent or representative, accept that they understand and accept the risks of using email