HMRC late payment interest rates to be revised after Bank of England increases base rate

The Bank of England’s recent decision to increase the base rate from 4.25% to 4.5% has implications beyond the realm of mortgage rates and personal finance. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has a longstanding policy of linking its interest rates to the Bank of England base rate. As a result, late payment and repayment interest rates imposed by HMRC are set to rise following this adjustment. This article will explore the implications of these changes and the dates on which they will take effect.

The Bank of England Base Rate Increase

On 11 May 2023, the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee announced a 0.25% increase in the base rate, raising it to 4.5%. This decision was made in response to various economic factors, including inflation concerns, market conditions, and monetary policy objectives. The base rate serves as a benchmark for interest rates throughout the UK economy, influencing borrowing costs for individuals, businesses, and financial institutions.

Impact on HMRC Interest Rates

As HMRC’s interest rates are directly tied to the Bank of England base rate, any change in the latter has a cascading effect on the former. Consequently, late payment and repayment interest rates imposed by HMRC will be revised upwards.

Effective Dates for Revised HMRC Interest Rates

To ensure a smooth transition and give taxpayers sufficient notice, HMRC has set specific effective dates for the implementation of the revised interest rates. These dates are as follows:

Quarterly Instalment Payments: Starting from 22 May 2023, the revised interest rates will be applicable for taxpayers who make quarterly instalment payments. This primarily affects businesses and individuals who pay their tax liabilities in instalments throughout the year.

Non-Quarterly Instalment Payments: For those taxpayers who do not make quarterly instalment payments, the revised HMRC interest rates will take effect from 31 May 2023. This category includes individuals and businesses who pay their tax liabilities in non-regular instalments, such as annual lump-sum payments.

Implications for Taxpayers

The revision in HMRC interest rates has practical implications for taxpayers who fail to pay their taxes on time or owe outstanding amounts to the tax authority. The increased rates will result in higher interest charges being imposed on overdue tax liabilities. Conversely, individuals or businesses owed repayment by HMRC will also receive increased interest on the amounts owed to them.

It is important for taxpayers to be aware of these changes and factor them into their financial planning. Timely payment of tax obligations will help avoid unnecessary interest charges, and taxpayers should consider reviewing their tax strategies and payment schedules in light of the revised rates.

Beavis Morgan – Advisers to UK SMEs

While the economic landscape and business conditions in the UK continue to present challenges, small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) have the advantage of agility and adaptability. Their size and nature allow them to respond swiftly to changing market dynamics. However, to navigate these complexities successfully, it is crucial for SMEs to work alongside specialist advisers who can provide strategic guidance and help make critical business decisions that will shape their future success.

At Beavis Morgan, we offer a range of services designed to support SMEs in various aspects of their operations. Our team of specialists can assist you in sourcing and restructuring debt financing through our partner business, Moorfields Commercial Finance. We understand that financial stability and access to capital are essential for growth and sustainability, and we can help you explore options that align with your specific requirements.

Furthermore, we are equipped to address issues that may impact your business performance and success. Our experts can provide innovative solutions tailored to businesses and individuals facing challenging circumstances. We are committed to helping you overcome obstacles, optimise your operations, and unlock new opportunities.

To learn more about how we can help you and your SME business, your usual Beavis Morgan partner or email