With the January 31 tax return deadline just around the corner, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has revealed the top ten oddest excuses for sending in a late return.
The following bizarre, exotic and flimsy excuses have all been used by tardy taxpayers:
1. My pet goldfish died (self-employed builder);
2. I had a run-in with a cow (Midlands farmer);
3. After seeing a volcanic eruption on the news, I couldn’t concentrate on anything else (London woman);
4. My wife won’t give me my mail (self-employed trader);
5. My husband told me the deadline was March 31, and I believed him (Leicester hairdresser);
6. I’ve been far too busy touring the country with my one-man play (Coventry writer);
7. My bad back means I can’t go upstairs. That’s where my tax return is (a working taxi driver);
8. I’ve been cruising round the world in my yacht, and only picking up post when I’m on dry land (South East man);
9. Our business doesn’t really do anything (Kent financial services firm);
10. I’ve been too busy submitting my clients’ tax returns (London accountant).
All of these people and businesses received a £100 penalty from HMRC for filing late. They appealed against the decision using these excuses, but were unsuccessful.