Making Tax Digital (MTD) will fundamentally change the way businesses, the self-employed and landlords interact with HMRC. The regime will require businesses and individuals to register, file, pay and update their information using an online tax account.

The regime started in April 2019 for VAT purposes only when businesses with a turnover above the VAT threshold were mandated to keep their records digitally and provide their VAT return information to HMRC using MTD compatible software. The next stage in the introduction of MTD will be the launch of MTD for Income Tax.

A relatively small number of businesses and agents are already keeping digital records and providing updates to HMRC as part of a live pilot to test and develop the MTD service for Income Tax. Under the pilot, qualifying landlords and sole traders (or their agents) can use software to keep digital records and send Income Tax updates instead of filing a Self-Assessment tax return.

Every 3 months, users will electronically send a summary of their business income and expenses to HMRC. At the end of their accounting period, users will need to finalise their business income and expenses. They will also be able to submit any personal income and claim reliefs.

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