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.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

HMRC's Blockade

It seems that HMRC are enacting some form of "blockade" (usually regarded as an act of war when conducted on the international stage) against Christopher Lunn & Co (CLAC), a Sussex accounting firm.

The firm claims that HMRC is refusing to deal with it, and will not allow it to file certain tax returns while it is being investigated.

According to the FT CLAC were raided by HMRC in June 2010 and the firm's files taken.

Despite the investigation going on for the last 6 months, HMRC have not told them why they are being investigated. CLAC suspect it is part of HMRC's much vaunted (unless of course you are Vodafone or a friend of Hartnett) anti avoidance campaign.

In a letter sent by HMRC to clients on 30 November 2010, HMRC stated:

"The Commissioners of Revenue and Customs have come to the decision that in light of all the circumstances, there is no alternative other than to cease to deal with CLAC as an agent or representative for any of our customers. This includes communication in writing, via the telephone or by any electronic means."

A decision on the High Court civil action is due in the coming weeks.

Guilty until proven innocent appears to be the maxim of HMRC.

Should this department be given such powers, and be allowed to treat firms and individuals in such a high handed manner without due process?

Power of this nature, especially when in the hands of unelected bureaucrats, corrupts.

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. Despite the investigation going on for the last 6 months, HMRC have not told them why they are being investigated.

    Maybe HMRC do not know why!!!!!

  2. HMRC think that there is a problem.

    Once it is accepted that there is a problem, a Policy to collect or enforce tax obligations will be created.

    Policy officers tell HMRC Officers what to do.

    The Officers Raid. (It's allowed by the policy, you see, justified in amongst the thousands of tax laws. Also it's fun)

    HMRC , now, have lots of lovely paperwork.

    They really don't know what they're looking for yet.

    The longer they keep looking, the more evidence they will find.
    (This may take a long time)(It doesn't really matter that the accused is inconvenienced (and not getting much sleep), besides they're a tax dodger so it's disruption as well. Bonus)

    HMRC will, then, have some idea of what to charge them with or accuse them of.

    The evidence then gets drafted, redrafted and written up.
    Lot's of statements by lot's of hardworking officers and solicitors.

    The court case will, probably, be judged on the balance of probabilities. (No Legal aid for the accused though, even though the impact of this investigation has caused money is starting to running low)

    On the one hand you have HMRC (with respectable, hard working under appreciated officers) and on the other you have the accused (of tax fraud?) who is being asked to show that they haven't done something wrong.

    Sound likely?
    Sound reasonable?
    Who wins?

    I don't work for HMRC.
    If anyone can advise that this is wrong then please do.

  3. The cost of this must be huge! What happens if the High Court action goes against HMRC? We then have to assume that they will be asked to get their cheque books out and the whole cost rises even further.

    I do like the whole streamlining of the Judicial Process though. Why wait for Courts to hear the accusations and, god forbid, that the accused have an opportunity to rebut the accusations..... Why not just accuse and sentence at the same time. At least they are saving money in one way.

  4. It's high time they raid the offices of ExCom, take away their paperwork and arrest Board members for their wholesale incompetence, for destroying what was previously a decently-functioning department and for ripping off the country.