You couldn't make this up!
"I nearly fell of my chair with laughter last week when I was asked by Alliance Trust to have some forms CA1550 and CA 1544 re-signed because they were not double sided and they were saying HMRC would not accept them on single sheets!
Checking the date and realising it was not All Fools Day I rang the Revenue thinking that Alliance Trust had got something wrong, only to be told: 'the machines we have cannot recognise a single sheet and, yes, we prefer these forms to be double sided, and the way to overcome this is not to use Sellotape or staples but to go and buy some Scotch Magic tape and stick the two sheets together and then that will be fine'!
'Oh by the way if you were to use Sellotape it will melt from the heat of the scanner and could jam the machine!'
Whilst I want to be as green as I can and use less paper if at all possible at this moment the laser printer we have is fairly new and does not do duplex printing. Yes, I could spend several minutes faffing around and printing one page at a time but do not have the time to do this as it is not cost effective.
I wonder how many thousands of pounds HMRC spent on the state-of-the-art scanner that cannot recognise a single sided document!
I have studied both forms and cannot see anywhere in the instructions that these forms must be double sided. I wonder which page of the pension legislation does it say it has to be! Needless to say I have asked for the forms to be returned and I will get a roll of Scotch Magic Tape to make them double sided.
I hope you find this as amusing as I did, though at first I was not amused as you might expect!
If you want to check it out speak with the Revenue help line on 0845 9150150
I wonder if any other advisers have encountered this problem - or any other examples of ridiculous bureaucratic requirements from government departments or providers?
Andrew Warwick is partner at Absolute Financial Services LLP in Solihull."
Tax does have to be taxing.
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