As noted earlier on this site, today is D Day for tax credit claimants to confirm the details of their income for 2007-08. Failure to do so by this deadline will result in their tax credits being cancelled, and overpayments reclaimed.
Now, as is human nature, people leave things to the last minute (entirely predictable) and are calling the HMRC "hotline" to confirm their details in a last minute rush.
All well and good, except for one small problem...they can't get through!
Poor old HMRC, despite knowing full well that the run up to deadlines always produces a spike in calls, just couldn't get its act together to run an efficient and useful hotline service.
Rather similar, I think, to the online filing debacle when the HMRC system crashed because of a "massive" spike of 6,000 (yes, 6,000) hits in one day!
HMRC insist that the hotline is still working, and anyone having trouble phoning in their claim should keep on trying.
I guess it didn't help that HMRC had not planned ahead for the holiday season, as evidenced by their derisory offer of £100 (what does that buy you these days?) to staff to forgo their holidays to man their tax credit desks.
All in all pretty pathetic!
As I have said before, all this time trouble and expense can be eliminated at the stroke of a pen by abolishing tax credits and increasing personal allowances to around £10K-£12K.
That of course will never happen, as long as we have our "popular" Prime Minister in orifice.
Tax does have to be taxing.
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