HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is urging first-time Self Assessment (SA) filers who haven’t sent in their returns to register for its online services now.

It’s easy to register – just visit the GOV.UK website at and follow the instructions.

Registration can take up to seven working days to complete, as it involves HMRC sending you an activation code in the post. It’s therefore important not to leave this to the last minute, to avoid being in a rush to beat the 31 January filing deadline.

SA online customers can now opt to receive HMRC communications electronically, rather than via traditional print and post channels. This is a new service that will make the SA process paperless.

The deadline for paying any tax owed for 2013/14 is also 31 January. Taxpayers who owe less than £3,000, and want HMRC to collect the tax they owe through next year’s tax code, need to submit their online return by midnight on 30 December.

Simple, straightforward advice on SA can be found at HMRC’s new Facebook page at  and four YouTube videos covering important SA reminders can be downloaded at