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.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Debt Collection - HMRC Targets Nothing To Pay

It seems that HMRC have been sending letters to businesses informing them that their "outstanding tax debts" have been transferred to the HMRC's Distraint Department "to list your goods so that they may be sold at a public auction".

A tad "harsh" given that these letters, "signed" by imaginary non existent people, are being sent to businesses that owe ZERO.

Accountancy Age quote Paul Aplin, partner at A C Mole & Sons, who says that his clients have begun receiving these types of letters in the past few months.

"The thing that is missing from the letter is the amount of the debt that has prompted HMRC to consider such serious action.

The figure is, in fact, nil.

It seems that the letters are generated automatically when a "nil payment" submission has not been received by HMRC.

HMRC told Accountancy Age that these letters were being sent out, because HMRC was becoming more efficient in chasing debts.

So that's alright then!

This doesn't waste resources (eg HMRC's time in sorting the problem out, businesses time in responding, call centre time in answering complaints etc) then???

Ellen Green, an independent accountant, called the HMRC helpline and was told by call centre staff that there was a lack of morale in the front office as a result of the problems the letters are causing.

She was also told that contact names on the letter were made up.

However, as HMRC said, these letters are because HMRC is now more efficient in chasing debts!

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. Yeeeeeeeeeeee Haw.

  2. "The figure is, in fact, nil."

    Some nit wit of a manager is probably slappin chops, harassing staff wondering why the Monthly stats for these nil submissions are not on his desk so he can forward them on to an even more senior muppet of a manager on down the line.

  3. Do you get the impression that the tax take is drying up.?

    Because the HMRC is starting to have a smack of desperation about it.

  4. '"signed" by imaginary non existent people,'

    My first five demands with menaces did not bother with leaving a name, so I replied: 'Dear computer'...... though It is unclear, as yet, if the computer understands the command: 'Sit and Oscillate!!'

  5. Isn't it illegal to demand that which is not due?
    Is this attempted theft (intent to permanently deprive) because once having got their paws on what you don't own it is unlikely that you would get it back.
    What happens to the little people like the pensioners who get a letter like this?
    How many Nil demands shown on the whiteboard today?
    How does Pacesetter sort out this mess then, 3 C's or a Banzai Blitz?!
    Good old 103rd, always reliable.

  6. @ poster at 14.31

    Isn't it illegal to demand that which is not due?
    Is this attempted theft (intent to permanently deprive)

    How can it be illegal to issue a demand nothing? There is no debt for HMRC to get their "paws" on. They are trying to permanently deprive people of "nothing" in these cases.

    It's incompetance yes but not illegal

  7. Credit where credit is due. HMRC are just trying to provide work for DCA's and keep the economy going.

  8. It just gets worse doesn't it? Still feeling incredibly smug that I managed to get out of this farce a couple of months ago. The Dept started to implode some years ago but now it seems to be rushing headlong towards the precipice. To anyone with half a brain still left in this mickey mouse outfit: JUST GET OUT!

  9. So, these people don't owe the muppets at the 103rd a penny and yet they can send out letters demanding payment of nothing.
    Well never mind the moralty of the situation what about the legality of it? Then there is the accountability, or total lack of it.
    Why have the politicians not got a grip on this.
    The whole thing is totally out of control, its gone past not fit for purpose ages ago!
    An absolute disgrace whichever way you look at it.
    Pacesetter this problem - HMRC
    And the answer is?

  10. Hows about we all knock on random doors in our neighbourhood....say, 100 doors, and demand money with menaces (regardless of any money being owed).

    How many do you think will pay up just to get us off the doorstep?

    I think it just goes to show how ignorant and gullible the British Public is, especially if it is a demand from a Governmental body.

    British people are wimps (which is what HMRC rely upon),....and roll over at the first sign of 'heaviness' from what is SUPPOSED to be a trusted band of people.

    I despair at their (the public) weakness!

  11. "...HMRC is now more efficient in chasing debts!"

    The chances of HMRC becoming more efficient at anything lie somewhere between nil and,err... nil!!!

  12. "...HMRC is now more efficient in chasing debts!"

    This "improved efficiency" in chasing "nil" debts is the clearest evidence yet that strict application of PaceSetter tools and techniques will bring untold riches to HMRC... ho farking ho!!!

  13. Global fight for IMF top job...

    Gordon Brown is a possible contender in the global fight for IMF top job... FFS!!!

  14. Gordon Brown as a possible contender for IMF top job... beggars belief.

  15. I wonder if there are any super injunctions in place to stop the press publishing what really goes on at HMRC management meetings.

  16. These letters are in relation to PAYE schemes for employers.Employers (ltd companies, sole traders partnerships, indviduals) who have employees and deduct tax & ni from them must pass on the deductions to hmrc through their paye scheme.Pyments are due monthly, quarterly or annually.The letters are aimed at employers who have taken tax from employees' wages but not passed on to hmrc. Business that have nil due but have not submitted a nil declaration also get the letters.A great many of these businesses are one-man-band limited companies with no employees other than the sole directors.If these business traded as sole traders, which is what they actually are, then they would not need to operate a paye scheme and would not get these demand letters.

  17. @ 18.39

    You may have a fair point here although for one-man-band ltd coys there may be IR35 considerations. However, what is the possible justification for threatening letters to be going out with fictitious names on them? What the hell happened to accountability?

  18. I cannot confirm whether the names are fictitious.The wording quoted in the original post is from the third letter in the sequence, issued after the first and second less-strongly-worded letters have been ignored. These new letters have lead to employers contacting hmrc and paying up more quickly (either immediately or in instalments). Among a minority of employers there has been a culture of including employees' tax & ni in cashflow.