Ways that HMRC can collect overdue tax

If you are unable to pay your tax bill or need time to pay then it is in your best interest to contact HMRC as soon as possible. For example, you can apply to HMRC to make a payment plan and seek to agree a way forward. This can be done through the Payment Support Service (PSS).

If the payment of overdue tax is unresolved, HMRC can take enforcement action to secure the money they are owed. HMRC can also charge interest on outstanding amounts and you may also be required to pay penalties and surcharges. There are a number of ways that HMRC can collect overdue tax.

This includes:

  • collecting what you owe through your earnings or pension
  • asking debt collection agencies to collect the money
  • taking items that you own and selling them (if you live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland)
  • taking money directly from your bank account or building society (if you live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland)
  • taking you to court
  • making you bankrupt or closing down your business

There are limits on HMRC’s scope to take money owed. For example, the Direct Recovery of Debts rules allows HMRC to target non-compliant taxpayers who have sufficient funds in their accounts to pay. HMRC has said that these powers will only be used as a last resort after the debtor has repeatedly refused to pay what they owe and have received a face-to-face visit from HMRC to discuss their debt. There are also measures in place to ensure that a minimum of £5,000 is left in a taxpayer's account.

About Us

We are qualified and experienced medic accountants and business advisors who have been in general practice for over 20 years having helped medic & dentist clients in meeting their aims of maximizing profits and both retaining and building on the rewards of their hard work.


With our newsletter, you automatically receive our latest news via e-mail and get access to the archive including advanced search options!

» Sign up for the newsletter
» Login

Contact Us

Medic Accountants
Cromer Business & Innovation Centre
North London Business Park
Oakleigh Road South
London N11 1GN
Ph: + 44 (0) 207 183 0034
Fx: + 44 (0) 207 100 1082
Registered in Companies House England & Wales

Birmingham office
Cambrai Court,
1229 Stratford Road,
Hall Green,
B28 9AA
Ph: 0121 285 4550
Fx: 0121 285 4551

Copyright © 2018 - Medic Accountants company. All rights reserved.  Website Privacy Policy