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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.
Tuesday, 18 November 2008
Repayment Delays Hurt Businesses
Andrew Lloyd, a Baker Tilly tax partner, has stated that 46% of claims handled by their Liverpool office for tax refunds were affected by delays.
He is quoted in the Liverpool Echo:
"In some cases, HMRC offices are honest enough to say that the delays reflect a resource issue.
In other situations, we are almost at the stage of HMRC promising the 'cheque is in the post' with the worst-affected refunds outstanding for many months for no good reason.
It's apparent that tax refunds arising from online filing of returns, where the claimant has provided bank details, are dealt with more quickly than paper-based filings and cheque refunds.
With businesses and individuals feeling the financial squeeze, it's inexcusable if HMRC are hanging on to tax refunds longer than they ought to."
An HMRC spokesman is also quoted:
"We never delay repayments without good reason.
Repayments claimed online are inevitably processed more quickly than those requiring clerical processing but the vast majority of self-assessment claims are being processed as normal."
It seems that the taxpayer is faced with a catch 22 situation, online filing may result in faster repayment of refunds. However, the online system is not yet working well enough for people to feel confident in using it.
Tax does have to be taxing.
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