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, 15 October 2018

HMRC Dishonours Negotiated Agreement



My thanks to the loyal reader who posted this behind the scenes account of how HMRC screw up and dishonour negotiations:
"At a meeting a few weeks ago, the senior HMRC staff who have been engaged in a FIVE YEAR negotiation with a major multinational were being beaten up by the CEO and CFO to explain why a deal everybody (foreign tax authorities included) had been happy with 3 months ago was now a non runner.

All they did was to mumble about "Governance Procedures" and look deeply miserable.

As far as we could make out, it had gone up the food chain and a summary been served cold to beings unfamiliar with the history and complexities.

And one or more of them had bellowed "I like it not!!!" because despite offering a large net cash gain for the UK Treasury over the coming years, a large current year offset and smaller repayment in respect of prior years would result.

So off to Litigation it is. HMRC will lose because their original stance was based on a near complete misunderstanding of the facts and a refusal to listen.
"
This is not the way to handle things!

See you in four or five years.


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17 comments:

  1. Off Topic...BUT!

    Statement from Dame Laura Cox
    “We are proud to work in the House of Commons, but when we are abused those
    who
    lead us should support us, not abandon us to our fate and cover up the traces.
    And those who abuse us should be held accountable. Establishing a new complaints
    and grievance process won’t come close to solving the problems in this place. We
    need a seism
    ic shift. But the institution is worth fighting for.”
    Member of House of Commons staff
    These words, spoken by someone employed by the House, reflect the very essence
    of the views expressed by so many who contributed to this inquiry:

    These words, spoken by someone employed by the House, reflect the very essence
    of the views expressed by so many who contributed to this inquiry:

    the sense of prid
    e that members of staff feel in working for the House of
    Commons;

    the lack of support given to those who have been bullied, harassed or
    sexually harassed;

    a culture that has actively sought to cover up such abusive conduct;

    a palpable lack of protection fo
    r individuals reporting such abuse;

    a lack of accountability for that abuse; and

    the belief that a new complaints process will not begin to solve these
    problems.
    Abusive conduct of this kind is pervasive and no workplace is immune, but the
    culture in whi
    ch it has been able to take hold in the House of Commons and the
    ineffective mechanisms for dealing with it make this a particularly serious case.
    The nature and extent of the allegations of bullying, harassment and sexual
    harassment, made against other
    members of House staff as well as against some
    Members of Parliament, are disturbing, and the effects of such misconduct have
    been exacerbated by the inadequate procedures in place to tackle them. Extensive
    experience in the field of employment law over
    several decades, involving many
    4
    different public and private sector employers, marks the House out as a stark
    reminder of how bad things used to be....

    I hope this copied reasonably, however, please refer source document

    THE BULLYING AND HARASSMENT OF HOUSE OF COMMONS
    STAFF
    INDEPENDENT INQUIRY REPORT
    DAME LAURA COX DBE

    as published by GUIDO FAWKES

    suggest you all read the full document

    A good start to the week - EXCOM and above - the sands are runnimg out...

    ReplyDelete
  2. I suffer with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) due to HMRC and Jon Thompson, and have been left suicidal.
    HMRC conducted a campaign of bullying and harassment over a lengthy period of time - this is well documented (despite the pathetic and retrospective attempt to re-write history by some uneducated, lazy, bullies in management and working on the HR casework team in Manchester).
    This law-breaking and violent misconduct was referred to my local Member of Parliament who wrote to Jon Thompson. Mr Thompson sent a grossly offensive, dismissive, smug but thoroughly dishonest response to the MP. I directly accused HMRC of being dishonest and showing all the hallmarks of their guilt they did not respond. That's why when Mr Thomspon recently publicly boasted of his "personal integrity" it was almost laughable to read. With people who boast of their boast of their 'personal integrity' it's a bit like when countries call themselves 'the Democratic Republic of..." - they rarely are.
    That HMRC's bullying culture as affected so many victims, leaving people suicidal, would suggest the time has come for justice.
    Institutions ranging from the BBC to the House of Parliament have been unable to avoid such issues, and with it seemingly being much worse in HMRC, these thugs need to be investigated.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I know we are off topic but I agree with your post.
    I've scanned this report into the bullying & harassment in the House of Commons and there are many themes that ring true with HMRC;
    Power imbalance
    Gradism
    Reporting it is career damaging
    Deference
    Instances not properly investigated
    Inadequate HR
    Use of process (Performance Management ) as a vehicle for bullying.

    I am nearing the end of my 30 plus year employment and can say that the last decade has seen an unprecedented growth in bullying within HMRC so that it is now an entrenched culture.

    Current managers,many "sponsored" by bullys who not only got away with it but got promoted,are emulating bad behavI our as if it's normal.

    They too expect to get away with it and indeed get rewarded with rapid promotion as they get results.

    It's appalling - and will be perpetuated as they groom their favourites as replacements.

    I don't envy younger employees with family and mortgage commitments having to survive this horrible culture - I just hope they don't "sell out".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed.
      Be in no doubt that HMRC is full of bullies.
      The staff reviews at https://www.indeed.co.uk/cmp/Hmrc/reviews shine a light on it. Much consistency. Very, very believable.
      One example from a former employee: "my manager is a nasty repugnant manager who is self egostical ego centric person who likes to emotionally torture and bully people." So,so typical.
      The bastards responsible should be prosecuted.

      Delete
  4. HMRC committed criminal offence against me leaving my family and I in fear. The perpetrator was not prosecuted or disciplined, in fact her false statements were used to cover other aspects of bullying.
    This was despite the following in HMRC being aware:
    Jon Thompson
    Lin Homer
    Tim Stonehouse
    Antony Moss.

    If it could happen to someone who had a long career in the Department nobody is safe from them.

    ReplyDelete
  5. 15 October 2018 at 12:15 > No need to apologise. You are never on topic but I really think you should seek help for your
    Dissociative Identity Disorder and OCD.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Massive changes need to occur at HMRC.

    As an organisation they are incapable or unwilling to make the necessary changes.

    HMRC put a disproportionate emphasis on leadership, however this has bred a type of manager who is not the type of leader a person with decent values would want to follow.

    Lack of funds have meant that the main tool to get things done is by fear.

    Fear can only reap results for so long.
    Respect is what is required and that has to be earned NOT demanded.
    If the required changes don't occur soon then HMRC will have to be broken up or disbanded

    ReplyDelete
  7. Last time i heard everything in here was BRILLIANT in the HMRC.....or so that is what we are forced to say !!
    What a shithole.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Many of the managers in HMRC have got there not through their experience of the job, but because they are in the main power hungry.
    When I am being managed by someone who has only been in a few years, and with no experience of the role they floated into, it's time to say goodbye. It is a dreadful place to work if you are loyal to your team and don't want to apply for promotion as you love(d) the job you do. You are sneered upon as having "no ambition" when all you want to do is a good job using your experience.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The above post is spot on...and a very sad indictment on the shambles of an organisation we work in.

      Delete
  9. Its all here:

    https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/treasury-committee/treasury-sub-committee/inquiries/parliament-2017/conduct-tax-enquiries-resolution-tax-disputes-17-19/

    Read the oral and writtene evidence especially that fron Pinsent Mason. It is utterly appalling, clearly the end result of abject senior HMRC staff cowardice:

    "Many of the proposed settlements will have been made by the taxpayer but submitted to the Tax Assurance Commissioner without the support of the HMRC case team running the enquiry.

    The rejected cases might now end up in years of litigation, some of which HMRC will lose. We question whether that is really a good outcome for both the businesses concerned and the wider body of taxpayers.

    Our experience of the process is that HMRC negotiating teams have to go through unnecessary hoops in order to fall within the letter of the LSS so that they get through HMRC's governance procedures. We think this causes unnecessary delays and is not in the best interest of the Treasury or the taxpayers."

    Pathetic waste of time effort and money





    ReplyDelete
  10. Re: The vile, toxic work bullying culture at HMRC.

    It's a good thing that the bullying story at the House of Commons is receiving widespread publicity and getting people talking about this issue. But why has there been no similar investigation or inquiry into what has been/is going on inside HMRC?

    Of course, people technically have rights in the workplace. Employers have a duty of care for all their employees to prevent bullying and harassment. They also have responsibilities under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 for the welfare of employees. They also have responsibilities under Data laws and to not harass people contrary to the Prevention of Harassment Act 1997 etc etc.

    How do employees at HMRC enforce those rights though when HMRC management sanction the fabrication of 'evidence' to ensure justice will not prevail? When HMRC know that their actions are going to be, or are likely to be, challenged in County Court or Employment Tribunal proceedings then surely HMRC management and HR staff are guilty of committing serious offences such as attempting to pervert the course of justice and Misconduct in Public Office.

    Violence in any workplace is unacceptable. Most employers know that. HMRC just think they can do what the hell they like. If an inquiry or investigation is launched into HMRC's toxic culture, the terms of reference must include scrutiny of how victims have suffered a double injustice by the cover ups. And where there is evidence of criminal offences, let's hope that prosecutions of HMRC bullies will follow.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Read Dame Laura Cox's bullying report and consider how many of these apply to HMRC:

    - being shouted at or belittled
    - others being "routinely unpleasant, overbearing or confrontational" to them
    - being constantly criticised or having derogatory remarks made about their work
    - being told they are useless and humiliating them in front of others
    taunting, mocking or mimicking them.

    Much worse has occurred inside HMRC. We also need to consider the corrupt, dishonest, authoritarian and aggressive way HMRC use 'performance management' to take their revenge on those of reported being bullied or supported those being bullied.

    Their misconduct has a negative impact on the operational efficiency of HMRC, so maybe Jon Thompson should be questioned at length by a Treasury Select Committee???

    ReplyDelete
  12. I'd like to see Jon Thompson answer questions I front of a number of "coal face" workers, without having to put their questions through some filter process. I imagine that this would be far more telling than any session in front of the Treasury Select Committee.

    Which is never likely to happen.....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HMRC management look down at the 'plebs' doing the real work. They would never subject themselves to proper scrutiny from intelligent people who will confront them with uncomfortable truths.

      The senior management have a thuggish approach to people they consider beneath them (bullying always thrives where a power imbalance exists) and are a bunch of cowards if nothing else.

      Delete
  13. Returning to the issue originally raised this sounds like the litigation strategy in operation, typically involving big corporates and a basket of complex tax disputes covering several years. Before the strategy came into being the large business office would typically trade off issues to reach an overall settlement.
    In theory the LSS looks at each issue in isolation to decide whether there is a better than 50% chance of succeeding in the courts. If so litigate, if not drop.
    Trouble is this takes decision making away from front line team where it used to reside and creates what has been reported,dragging out timescales. In the old days inspectors could take cases to tribunal to resolve - no longer.

    ReplyDelete
  14. It is a single, large issue with nothing else involved in the dispute.

    No grand policy point involved, won't read across into other disputes. Complex facts yes, but no remaining uncertainties.

    My guess? The briefing tha went up the food chain was not properly understood by those who received it: they just saw the initial cost of settling and went "yuck".

    Will in the view of two leading QC's result in an either an on the steps reversal from HMRC or an almost certain win for the client and yet another "How the hell did this stupidity get so far?" judgement.

    ReplyDelete