On 7 July we reported that HMRC’s online filing system for employment related shares was down – worrying, given the 6 July filing deadline. Things finally seem to be returning to normal but some issues are still being reported as it appears HMRC are limiting the number of concurrent users of the system so that error messages may still be generated. HMRC have extended the filing deadline until 4 August and have put out the following message:

ERS Online

This service is now live. We apologise for any inconvenience caused to customers.

As customers have been unable to file their annual return by the 6 July 2015 deadline, we will extend the deadline for filing annual returns. If a customer files their return on or before Tuesday 4 August we will not charge a penalty. There is no need for them to contact HMRC.

We have been asked whether customers who filed their returns on or before 3 July and received an on-screen acknowledgement might need to re-submit their returns. We are still investigating the potential impact on those customers. We will publish a further message about this in due course.

“Customers” who are about to go on holiday and still need to submit their annual return will continue to be concerned about the robustness of the system.