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Some 1,500 people broke off from turkey and all the trimmings to send in an online tax return on Christmas Day, with the peak time for filing occurring just before lunch was served, according to HMRC"s analysis of recent submissions according to Harris & Co accountants Northampton who themselves are very busy at this time of year filing tax returns for many local small and medium sized businesses.

HMRC records show that 1,566 people filed online on Christmas Day 2013, a 1% increase on the 1,548 who fitted in this particular chore during the festivities last year. In the hour between midday and 1pm, 144 people hit the send button on their completed return.

A much larger number finished off their returns on Christmas Eve, with 17,000 individuals filing, up 19% on the 14,330 returns received on 24 December 2012. However, the numbers who roused themselves on Boxing Day dropped by 4%, down to 4,493 people compared with 4,685 the year before.

HMRC reports that in total, 23,059 online returns were received over the three-day holiday period, a 12% rise on the 2012 total of 20,563. Overall, some 10.9m people are expected to fill out a Self Assessment return for the 2012/13 tax year, which is due in by the deadline of 31 January 2014.

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