In a shock announcement, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has extended the deadline for the submission of share schemes returns for the tax year 2016–17 from July 6 to August 24 (2017), reported ESOP Centre member Postlethwaite, the employee ownership lawyers.
In its Employment related Securities Bulletin No 24, published a few weeks ago, HMRC said:
“We’re aware that the ERS annual returns online service has experienced some issues. “We’re sorry this has prevented some returns from being submitted.
“The service is now working and you can upload Output Delivery System (ODS) templates and CSV files when submitting your annual return for the tax year 2016–17. “The deadline for filing annual returns is July 6 following the end of the tax year, so for the tax year 2016–17 it’s July 6 2017.
“However, in view of the recent problems encountered by customers using the ERS service we’ve extended the deadline to August 24 2017 for the tax year 2016 to 2017.”
Returns, including nil returns, must be submitted for any schemes that you’ve registered on the ERS online service, such as:
Enterprise Management Incentives (EMI); a non-tax advantaged scheme or award; Schedule 4 Company Share Option Plan; Schedule 3 SAYE scheme and/or Schedule 2 Share Incentive Plan.
A return is required even if you have: already paid the initial penalty of £100; had no transactions; made an appeal; had an appeal allowed; ceased the scheme by entering a final event; registered the scheme in error; registered a duplicate scheme; notified EMI option grants.
Scheme returns filed on or after August 25 2017 will incur penalties, starting with an automatic £100 penalty. Further details of the extended deadline and the penalties for late filings are contained in this link: HMRC’s ERS Bulletin No 24. Additional automatic penalties of £300 will be charged if the return is still outstanding three months after the original deadline of July 6 and a further £300 if it’s still outstanding six months after that date.
To find out more about employee share schemes, join the IoD conference in partnership with the ESOP Centre to be held at the offices of Travers Smith in London on Thursday September 14 2017.
This full day conference will help you decide whether to introduce an employee share scheme or deepen existing employee share ownership in your company.