Making Tax Digital (MTD) for Income Tax will be delayed until April 2024, the Government has confirmed.
It means self-employed business owners and landlords will have one more year to prepare for the digitalisation of Self Assessment.
According to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), the decision to delay the digital tax regime comes after concerns that small business owners are still dealing with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
A later start date, the tax office said, will give those required to join – such as businesses and landlords with a business income over £10,000 per annum – “more time to prepare”.
Partnerships, meanwhile, will not be required to join the regime until April 2025.
MTD for VAT was first launched in April 2019, significantly changing the way businesses are required to account for VAT. This includes using MTD-compliant cloud accounting software – such as Xero or QuickBooks – to keep VAT records and submit VAT returns digitally.
Commenting on the changes, Lucy Frazer, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said: “The digital tax system we are building will be more efficient, make it easier for customers to get tax right, and bring wider benefits in increased productivity.
“But we recognise that, as we emerge from the pandemic, it’s critical that everyone has enough time to prepare for the change, which is why we’re giving people an extra year to do so.
“We remain firmly committed to Making Tax Digital and building a tax system fit for the 21st century.”
From April 2022, almost all VAT-registered businesses will be required to use MTD for VAT to complete VAT returns, regardless of income. Under current regulations, only businesses whose turnover exceeds the VAT threshold (£85,000) are required to join.