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, 25 February 2009

On Target

On TargetA tax professional rang HMRC the other day, on behalf of a client whose PAYE tax code has been wrong for a number of years.

The Service Team advised her that she "has a long wait" ahead of her to get the situation corrected.

How long?

Unclear, as this particular HMRC office are currently dealing with post from August 23rd 2008.

Seemingly, according to the Service Team, this is "on target".

Tax does have to be taxing.

HMRC Is Shite (, also available via the domain, is brought to you by "The Living Brand"


  1. Could be wrong but I don't think one is obliged to deduct tax in accordance with an incorrect tax code.

  2. Xoggoth,

    You're probably right, insofar as an employer who deducts and pays the right amount, rather than the higher amount as per the incorrect code, shouldn't be liable for interest and penalties once the correct position is established following any employer compliance review.

    However, if I were an employer I'd want to be pretty certain that the coding really was wrong before I risked paying interest, penalties and the extra cost of dealing with a longer employer compliance review.

    Worth a try convincing the employer to do so, however.

  3. Sorry Xoggoth I think you are wrong. The idea of using tax codes is that an individuals tax affairs are confidential - the employer is not entitled to know any details about the employees personal tax affairs. As the employer does not know all of the circumstances they are required to operate the code issued by HMRC.
    Just because an employee tells an employer the code is wrong it doesn't mean the employer can ignore it. If they do they become liable for any under deduction of tax. They could also face penalties for incorrect operation of PAYE.
    If I'm wrong I'm telling my employer I should be on 999999999999L.