Image: Ian Forsyth Image: Ian Forsyth

Businesses and individuals affected by the recent floods have been given an extension to the Self Assessment tax deadline.

Those unable to file their return on time as a result of the floods should contact HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). The tax office will then agree a new deadline with those affected, and those who have genuine reason related to the floods will be able to appeal if they miss the original 31 January deadline.

However, accountants are warning that HMRC's relaxing of the rules is not an indefinite removal of fines for those who miss the deadline.

Tens of thousands of homes and businesses were flooded in the North West, North Wales and Scotland when Storms Desmond, Eva and Frank struck towards the end of 2015 and into 2016, causing millions of pounds worth of damage.

Chas Roy-Chowdhury, head of taxation at the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), said: "This is not an indefinite suspension of self-assessment penalties, but a recognition of the difficulties many businesses suffered that was beyond their control."