HMRC Is Shite

HMRC Is Shite
Dedicated to the taxpayers of Britain, and the employees of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC), who have to endure the monumental shambles that is HMRC.

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Using The Data Protection Act

Using The Data Protection Act
In early April Nick Morgan wrote about the ordeal that he suffered whilst being investigated by HMRC. HMRC when it launches an investigation turns centuries of British jurisprudence on its head, by shifting the onus onto the taxpayer to prove his/her innocence.

In late April Nick wrote a follow up piece for AccountingWeb, explaining how he used the Data Protection Act to gain access to the files that HMRC kept on him during the investigation to fight his corner.

It seems that when a request is made for information held by HMRC, the tax file is physically sent to Newcastle where it is read and vetted by the Data Protection team. Once they have decided what can and cannot be released, copies are made and sent out to the taxpayer and the original documents are then returned to the investigating officer.

Nick got what he wanted, including information that showed the HMRC investigating officer admitting that the case was not a big one, and a senior officer saying that he wanted it closed down ASAP.

Nick advises that people make the most of the Data Protection Act whilst they can. His prognosis for the future is that HMRC will seek to change the rules and block future requests.

Is Nick being too cynical about HMRC?

Surely they are merely a tax collection function, set up to serve to the people, which would not seek to change the rules?

Tax does have to be taxing.

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2 comments:

  1. I just tried the same thing and have been denied as the information is exempt under Section 18(1) & Section 23(1) of the Commissioners for Revenue and Customs Act 2005.

    ReplyDelete
  2. If I was brain dead with no moral compass and want to molest little old ladies for a few pence on their personal tax returns - I would become a tax inspector

    22 November 2011 1

    ReplyDelete