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, 21 August 2017

HMRC Rigs Staff Surveys - Latest Update


My thanks to a loyal reader who posted an update the other day as to the ongoing staff survey rigging that appears to be endemic within HMRC:
"2017 Staff Survey latest :We are now being "coached" on how to fill in the survey.....we are being told that if we are going to answer negatively to a question then there are 4 other questions we must look at before deciding...if we answer "yes" to any of these then the overall question becomes positive and therefore a "yes".....you couldn't make this shit up.This survey is "voluntary"...however each manager will be asked to submit how many of thier staff took part in it for "engagement" purposes.

I never filled in these forms but now because of these underhand tactics i will...just to stick it up them....they are a shower of bastards !!!
"
Please feel free (if you are able) to share your experiences of the ongoing staff survey rigging in HMRC.

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Friday, 18 August 2017

HMRC Pisses Off MP For Bootle


Peter Dowd MP  for Bootle is more than a little pissed off with HMRC.

For why?

It seems that HMRC did not brief him ahead of the announcement that the town’s tax office was set to close.

The ECHO reports that early yesterday HMRC confirmed that it will close its Triad centre in Bootle, and that all staff will move to a new “super call centre” at the Grade II*-listed India Buildings in Liverpool city centre .

Peter Dowd, who has spoken out against the proposed move in the past, said:
I am furious that I have had to learn of such an important decision from the ECHO. I later checked my emails and discovered that a letter from HMRC chief executive John Thompson was sent to me at around lunchtime today.

But that is still not good enough. I would like to point out that I am also shadow chief secretary to the treasury, and this decision fell well within my brief. I would have liked a bit of notice ahead of an announcement that is so important to my constituency.”
Staff will start moving from the landmark Triad building on Stanley Road to the India building from 2019. Workers from other HMRC regional centres will also move to the India building on Water Street.

HMRC's communications found wanting?

Quelle surprise!

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Thursday, 17 August 2017

HMRC Fines 1 Million Innocent People


It seems that HMRC is so desperate to satisfy its political masters, and to ensure that its directors get their bonuses, that it has been trying to fine up to one million innocent people hundreds of pounds each for late tax returns.

The Telegraph reports that HMRC said that 963,000 taxpayers were found to be unnecessarily registered for self-assessment (SA) in the past two years and have now been taken out of the system altogether.

None of the taxpayers had put in SA tax returns for three years yet were still being chase for late filing penalties by HMRC’s inspectors.

The number of people affected represents one in 11 of the UK’s 11 million people who are registered to pay tax in this way every year.

Good work lads, keep it up!

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Catching The Tax Dodgers


Last night Channel 4 screened "Catching The Tax Dodgers".

I didn't watch it, but according to the Guardian it was:
"a nuanced piece of storytelling, peppered with fascinating human anthropology."
Those of you who did watch it are more than welcome to give your views on its "nuance" etc.

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Friday, 11 August 2017

Joining The Dots of HMRC's Property Deals


Unsurprisingly, yesterday's article about HMRC's very expensive superhub in Cardiff has raised a few eyebrows and issues.

My thanks to a loyal reader for posting the following comment that highlights a few dots that need to be joined:
"Whoa there pilgrim, just a cotton picking minute, let's take a closer look at this afore ye spend all that "customer's" money!?

Who owns the Llanishen site? Thought Mapely did as per Wales On Line 13 Nov 2015 - The freehold interest in the current HMRC office site at Llanishen is owned by Mapeley Estates, following a private finance initiative agreement ...????


Surely that was why HMRC was paying for rent etc. on the site?

Then there is the matter of £20m (currently) for fitting out, so the lease is bare building? This is (currently) £5000/head just to fit out! WTF they having 22" plasma screens, gold plated loo's, FFS?! Piss off to IKEA, just a mile or 2 down the road and save yourself a few million!

Transport/parking infrastructure - all of a sudden 4.000 extra staff plus security, cleaners, deliveries etc. land upon the centre of Cardiff via train, bus, car, pedal, foot. Bloody trains have to queue now outside the station and Cardiff traffic is a nightmare for public and private transport.

Who is actually paying for this "range of benefits to people in Cardiff" ? Oh, that's all right then, it is only the end user that has to worry then, come back in 5 years time and see how much the real cost has reached!

Given the appalling track record of previous estate deals in this part of the public sector this needs a wee dig by an investigative journo' to establish VFM and whether basic business checks have been applied to such an amount of "customer expenditure".

Oh, yes, as these Muppets no longer FTF with their "customer" base, why the need for an expensive central location - vanity? Is there a common purpose associated with the development that remains hidden?

Answers on the back of a postage stamp please.
"
Oh, and don't forget (as per WalesOnline):
"The freehold interest in the current HMRC office site at Llanishen is owned by Mapeley Estates, following a private finance initiative agreement with the UK government. 

But that deal will expire around 2020. The land would then revert into UK government ownership."
2020 being the year that HMRC moves to its superhub.

There's irony for you!

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Thursday, 10 August 2017

HMRC Signs Largest Ever Office Deal In Wales


HMRC have made the record books in Wales, for agreeing the largest office deal ever seen in Wales.

HMRC will move to a new headquarters in the centre of Cardiff - at the heart of a new public sector hub that will employ 4,000.

HMRC, which currently has its main tax office in Wales in the Llanishen area of Cardiff, has signed up to a new 266,000 sq ft building in a major pre-let deal which marks the next phase of development at the Central Square regeneration scheme in the centre of the capital.

WalesOnline reports that it is scheduled for completed in late 2019, with HMRC moving into its new offices from 2020.




The 12 storey building will be known as 6 Central Square. It will be built by construction firm Robert McAlpine. However, there is the small matter of planning consent for the £100m project. A determination is expected next month.

The move will allow HMRC to sell its existing site in Llanishen for redevelopment, potentially for a housing led regeneration scheme. Some 3,600 HMRC staff (full-time equivalent) will be based in the HQ.

HMRC has agreed a 25-year lease for its new building at Central Square. It is understood there is no break clause and the rent - starting at around £16 a sq ft per annum - will be subject to rent reviews based on the then retail prices index measure of inflation every five years.

HMRC is also forward committing £20m to the fitout of the building.

Once completed the building's ownership with transfer to L&G's pension arm - for what is a prized investment asset, due to the strong covenant provided by a government organisation over 25-years with no break clause.

Minister for Government Resilience and Efficiency, Caroline Nokes, said:
This Government is committed to delivering the best quality public services in every corner of the UK, and today’s announcement is an important step towards that.

This new lease is great news for Cardiff, and will deliver a range of benefits to people in Cardiff, from improved public space and transport to better access to the Principality Stadium from the station.
Let us trust that the rent that HMRC pays is "reasonable" when compared to similar properties/locations. Let us also trust that the building remains fit for purpose for the expected 25 year rental period!


Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance




HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"



Wednesday, 9 August 2017

HMRC Releases Agent Update For August/September


HMRC have just released their Agent Update for August/September:
"Welcome to Agent Update 61. 

In this edition you can read about the International Tax Compliance (Client Notifications) Regulations, which have a deadline of 31 August 2017. 

The Pensions Regulator explains what your clients need to know about automatic enrolment and Companies House have contributed an article to help you with incorporating a company. 

The Working Together section includes the usual updates on issues and you can read about how a few simple steps can help protect your business against cyber threats. 

You can also find out about the new Making Tax Digital for Business timetable. 

We often invite agents to take part in ‘User Research’. Recently we welcomed volunteers to help define and create a new digital service for PAYE Settlement Agreements. If you would be interested in joining further areas of user testing, all you have to do is subscribe to our Agent Update email service making sure you indicate that you would be happy to receive other tax related updates. 

If you have any comments about Agent Update please contact the editor Peter Smith."
Enjoy!

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

HMRC Sits On Student Loan Overpayments


The Telegraph reports that figures released under the Freedom of Information Act show that almost 90,000 students continued making payments on their student loans after they had already repaid it in full in the 2015-16 tax year.

A total of £51m was overpaid during that year.

Experts branded the level of overpayment “staggering” and said that the Student Loans Company should be doing more to offer graduates a transparent and efficient service, with one MP demanding in Your Money today that the quango “end the scourge” of making borrowers overpay.


So what?

I hear you ask.

What has this to do with HMRC?

Read on.....

The majority of students repay their loans through their payroll, with the money being collected by employers and paid to HMRC. Employers must report these figures to HMRC monthly, and graduates can see on each payslip how much they have repaid.

However, despite HMRC collecting repayment information monthly, it only reports the figure once a year to Student Loans Company – at the end of the tax year. Nor does HMRC pass on the information immediately.

In fact, the Student Loans Company has indicated that some data reaches it only seven months after the tax-year end. This means some graduates will wait until November to find how much they have paid.

The figures will only be accurate to April 5 of that year, meaning the statement is already months out of date when it is sent.

It is only once the Student Loans Company has received this information that it calculates the loan outstanding on the account – which is when it becomes clear that some have overpaid.

Unsurprisingly, HMRC are very very slow at repaying the overpayments!

Graham Farquhar, a partner at accounting firm RSM, nails the hypocrisy:
It’s disappointing. HMRC is keen that employers pay everything in real time and there is no such thing as a year’s grace. 

It’s interesting that this doesn’t seem to apply to HMRC itself.”
Oh, and don't forget, Steve Lamey was recently suspended as CEO of the SLC.

So what???

Lamey, as loyal readers know, used to work for HMRC a.o. as chief operations officer and chief executive of its tax credits and child benefits division.

How odd!!
Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance




HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"



Monday, 7 August 2017

HMRC's Childcare Service Failings


In June I noted that the private details of a number of childminders, including home addresses, have been published in error on HMRC’s Childcare Service website.

The details, which have since been removed from the website (which providers and parents must access for Tax-Free Childcare and the 30 hours) appeared on its 'Search for a Childcare Provider' page, despite the fact childminders had not given their permission for the data to be published.

It seems that this site has other issues as well.

Parents are required to use the dedicated HMRC website, which went live in April, to apply for the 30 hours and tax free childcare (TFC) schemes. CCH Daily reports that problems include an inability to verify the details of parents or their child, or salary information, and parents being locked out of their TFC accounts.

Nicky Morgan, chair of the Treasury committee and former education secretary, has written to HMRC head Jon Thompson, requesting detailed information on the issue.

This includes the proportion of website users receiving error messages, including the message ‘We’re experiencing technical difficulties. We don’t know when the service will be available again. Please try later.

Morgan is also seeking information about the dates and times of outages since the system went live in April, the number of complaints to the helpline, and how long it has been taking to respond to calls.

Morgan said:
"It’s concerning that some parents have struggled to apply for childcare funding due to technical issues with the government’s childcare service website.

To make matters worse, it appears that the childcare service helpline, for parents suffering problems with the website, is also experiencing technical difficulties.

I have written to Jon Thompson at HMRC, which runs the website, to ask for further information, such as the duration of outages, the number of complaints, and the number of people who have been unable to access their childcare service account."
HMRC appear to be relaxed over the problems, as per its spokesman:
"We know that some parents and childcare providers have experienced difficulties accessing the service, and we are sorry about the inconvenience.

We've now made significant improvements based on customer feedback, and on average more than 2,000 parents are applying successfully every single day.

We continue to make updates to improve the customer experience and ensure everyone can easily access their account.

Parents and providers experiencing difficulties or needing technical support can phone the childcare service helpline on 0300 123 4097."
The question is, does reality fit with HMRC's view of its "progress"?

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Friday, 4 August 2017

HMRC's Small Business Forum


HMRC has now launched it Small Business Forum (which had been running on a "beat" basis up until now).

Mel Stride, Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General, is quoted by CCH Daily:
"The UK’s 5.4 million small businesses play a vital role in our economy. We want to help businesses get off the ground and support them as they grow.

That is why we are launching a new forum and webchat service which will give these companies useful hints and tips – including how to complete tax returns, grow a business and trade outside the UK – so that they can continue to flourish."
Here is a link to the forum Small Business Forum.

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Tax Advisers Face £3K Fine For Not Issuing HMRC Threat


Tax advisers have less than 30 days to avoid a £3,000 penalty from HMRC by complying with a little known new legislation imposed by HMRC.

The FT Adviser reports that a notice published in September 2016 stated financial advisers, accountants and solicitors with UK resident clients who have an account with offshore money or assets in it, should send a letter provided by HMRC to those clients.

Advisers who do not send this letter by 31 August 2017 could be subject to a £3,000 tax penalty.

The letter, which demands UK residents bring their tax affairs up to date, states “the tax world is becoming more transparent” and closes with the threat, “come to us before we come to you”.
If you’re classed as a ‘specified financial institution’ or ‘specified relevant person’ - which includes financial advisers - you may need to send the notification letter to clients who are UK tax resident.

The criteria for this are, if you’ve provided them with financial advice or services, provided them with an overseas account, referred them for an overseas account or referred them for advice or services overseas.

According to HMRC website, the covering letter must include your usual branding, your client’s name and address on set text.

If you’re a financial institution the set text must say:
Financial institutions in more than 100 jurisdictions around the world are being legally required to find out the tax residence of their account holders and report details of their accounts, structures, trusts, and investments to be exchanged with the appropriate tax authorities.

As a UK tax resident, any overseas accounts you have will be sent to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). This gives HMRC unprecedented levels of information to check that, as in most cases, the right tax has been paid.

If you have already declared all of your past and present income or gains to HMRC, including from overseas, you do not need to worry. But if you are in any doubt, HMRC recommends that you read the factsheet attached to help you decide now what to do next.”
A spokesperson for HMRC said:
"The new legislation was designed to make people aware that HMRC will soon be getting data about offshore accounts from over 100 jurisdictions; there’s a disclosure facility, and penalties and other sanctions are going to get worse so come forward now.

It’s being sent by tax advisers and financial institutions because – at the moment - they know more about who is likely to get reported to HMRC. It’s right that these industries play their part in raising awareness on automatic exchange."
Call me old fashioned, but I think it's a tad unpleasant that HMRC use others to issue threats on its behalf!

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

HMRC's Digital Forms Service Down


Oh dear, it would seem that HMRC's trial Digital Forms Service is down for apparent "maintenance".

Unfortunately, HMRC doesn't seem to know when it will be back online.

Bodes well for MTD does it not?!

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

HMRC Rigs Staff Survey - By Threatening Office Closure


My thanks to a loyal reader who dropped me this wee note below:
"I just thought that your readers might be interested to know that at least one office in HMRC has found a way to improve the engagement results of the 2017 staff survey. 

Staff in one of the many offices ear marked to be closed in the next few years have recently been advised at team meetings that too many negative comments on the 2017 survey may result in their office being closed earlier than planned!"
Loyal readers are aware that HMRC has an "issue" with staff surveys, wrt lousy results and poor response rates. Indeed it has been noted before that certain managers try to manipulate staff into making positive comments.

However, to threaten the closure of an office is lower than disgusting!

Tax does have to be taxing.

Professional Cover Against the Threat of Costly TAX and VAT Investigations

Insurance to protect you against the cost of enquiry or dispute with HMRC is available from several sources including Solar Tax Investigation Insurance.

Ken Frost has negotiated a 10% discount on any polices that may suit your needs.

However, neither Ken Frost nor HMRCISSHITE either endorses or recommends their services.

What is Solar Tax Investigation Insurance?

Solar Tax Investigation Insurance is a tax-fee protection service that will pay up to £75,000 towards your accountant's fees in the event of an HM Revenue & Customs full enquiry or dispute.

To find out more, please use this link Solar Tax Investigation Insurance



HMRC Is Shite (www.hmrcisshite.com), also available via the domain www.hmrconline.com, is brought to you by www.kenfrost.com "The Living Brand"