Question: A friend of mine has told me that I am legally bound to keep financial records, including copies of my bank statements, for six years. Is this true?
Answer: Not necessarily, unless you operate a business – but all taxpayers must keep some financial records. HM Revenue & Customs says: “If you're not running a business, you'll normally have to keep your tax records for at least 22 months from the end of the tax year to which they relate.” This includes information on income (including savings and investment income), tax paid and charitable donations made using Gift Aid. If you are running a business, you must keep business and personal financial records for at least five years and ten months after the end of the tax year. Failure to comply with these requirements can lead to substantial fines.