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Software bug disrupts online tax returns

Hundreds of entrepreneurs have been prevented from completing their tax returns online due to a software bug on HM Revenue & Customs' (HMRC) system.

The online Self Assessment filing system should allow users to amend their returns as many times as they like before the January 31 deadline, but anyone trying to enter the system to make a second amendment has been locked out and shown an error message.

As a result of the glitch, people could face delays in getting rebates if they have overpaid tax during the year, or face last minute worries making changes to correctly calculate any underpayment due for January 31.

Andy Laver, product manager for taxation at business software and services company Sage says: 'The first thing to do when you encounter any issue with HMRC systems is to print out a copy of the error message you see on screen, so you can use this as proof if necessary that you were subject to system problems. You may also want to check the HMRC website, where messages on known system issues will be listed.' 

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