HM Revenue & Customs
HMRC payments on account are a system used by HMRC to collect advance payments towards an individual's tax liability for the following tax year. This system primarily applies to individuals who are self-employed or have significant income from sources other standard PAYE employment. 
The payments on account are made in two instalments and are based on the tax liability of the previous tax year. Each instalment is typically equal to half of the previous year's tax liability. These payments are due on two specific dates: January 31st (which is the same deadline for filing the previous year's tax return) and July 31st of each tax year. 
The purpose of payments on account is to ensure that individuals pay their taxes in advance, rather than in a lump sum at the end of the tax year. This helps to spread the tax liability across the year and reduces the risk of individuals falling behind on their tax payments. It also helps HMRC collect tax revenue more regularly throughout the year. 
It's important to note that payments on account are based on an estimate of the following year's tax liability. If an individual's income is expected to be significantly higher or lower in the upcoming tax year, they can apply to adjust the payments on account accordingly. Additionally, any excess payments made through payments on account will be credited towards the individual's tax liability for the following tax year or refunded if the amount exceeds the final tax liability. 
How to cancel, reduce or adjust your Payments On Account 
For further advice applicable to your circumstances please contact us
Our take on this. 
A lot of taxpayers view the whole Payments On Account system as that of HMRC being after their money up front before its due and it’s all a bit of a rip off. 
In fairness there are still an awful lot of people who are very much in favour of the system because it does for them exactly what it is intended to do, namely not let them fall behind with their tax payments. 
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