Oh dear it has been a "testing" few days from those "running" HMRC, hasn't it?
"Dame" Lesley Strathie (will someone please tell me why this person has been "Damed"?) and Dave Hartnett had to appear before the Treasury Select Committee yesterday for some ritual humiliation.
As a result of this, and Treasury orders, HMRC have now done a U turn and said that interest will not be charged on the tax underpayments caused by HMRC coding cock ups over the last two years.
Dame Lesley said:
"If they need time to pay, they won't pay interest. Ministers have asked us to put that in place."
As long as people facing a repayment contact HMRC to agree a timetable, no interest will be incurred.
Andrew Tyrie, the committee chairman, said:
"The fact that you have announced this today does look like a direct response to public pressure."
Interestingly HMRC's upper echelons were told about the latest underpayments in July, yet the public only informed last week.
Funny though that the policy reversal re interest has only been cobbled together now, in the face of widespread ridicule and condemnation?
One would have thought that HMRC executives could have foreseen all of this, and had a plan in place to avoid the shambles that has been unfolding before our eyes over the last few days?
Hartnett said that he regretted his "insensitivity" in not recognising immediately that people affected deserved an apology. He went on to apologise for not apologising immediately the issue became public.
"I know how to apologise, I've had to do it before.
I did not do it then and I am sorry for that.
I think we could have done better in helping taxpayers to prepare for this."
Hartnett also apologised for how he handled the BBC Moneybox interview.
(Quotes sourced from The Telegraph)
The sad thing is that this is but the tip of the iceberg; other things will come out and, like a West End farce, this farce will run and run.
BTW, where's "Three days a Week" Clasper gone?
Tax does have to be taxing.
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