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, 29 August 2019

Contractors Guilty Until Proven Innocent

The FT reports that GlaxoSmithKline has found itself at the centre of a tax crackdown after HMRC accused nearly 1,500 of its self-employed contractors of being “disguised employees”.

HMRC sent identical letters last week to contractors working in various GSK departments including IT and biomedical sciences.
We’re writing to you because you told us you were self-employed when you worked for and received payments through, your own company.

Whether a worker is employed or self-employed for tax purposes is not a matter of choice. Instead, you need to look at the facts of the working relationship between you and GSK.” 
The letters told the contractors that, if they accepted their GSK contract was caught by “IR35” rules on self-employment, they should calculate their employee payroll tax and national insurance contributions for the 2018/19 tax year and make payments by September 22.

If they disputed this, HMRC told them to reply with evidence by September 19.

Seb Maley, chief executive of Qdos, an IR35 tax specialist, said the letters were “aggressive” and that HMRC was trying to “terrify” contractors.
HMRC is working off the basis that these contractors are guilty until proven innocent.
Rebecca Seeley Harris, head of off-payroll at employment law specialist Re Legal Consulting, said contractors need not be afraid.
Although it sounds very threatening, the letter has no legal basis.

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. HMRC goes on a fishing trip

    The department has been frequenly criticised for the abuse of powers granted to them. As suggested, people are presumed guilty and then have to go through the court system to prove their innocence. You would expect this from the East German Stasi. The article below just about sums it up.

    They are acting like common gangsters in my opinion. Sending out unpleasant letters with no method of complaint, contact or recourse. Not too dissimilar to the parking eye bastards or Capita TV Licencing. Subverting due process and the rule of law. So, piss on them lets have some fun.

    It appears that the Director General of Customer Compliance is a specimen called Penny Ciniewicz at the last check. So, she is a good place to start. Alternatively any of these clowns should suffice.

    Hint: There's telephone numbers for Deputy Directors in that lot and it's on the internet! Jackpot!

    Her career started in Theatre, apparently. How nice. Obviously knows what a tax return looks like and can raise an assessment without too much difficulty. What? No you say? She's a gobshite SCS gong chaser who polishes her arse on the revolving door of officaldom?

    Unless I can come up with more sarcasm (albeit the lowest form of wit), that will be me until next week.

    Have a positively delightful weekend

    Ciao for now

    Your friendly neighbourhood troll.

  2. It's easier to terrify the little people than the top 1%, let alone the yacht-owning classes. So they now work on that crude basis. Bastards.

    They couldn't be more different from the highly professional tax inspector I had 35 years ago who I could even meet meet face to face if the occasional problem arose. The only issue I recall was actually a disagreement whether I was self-employed on one particular contract. The IR had a long list of written rules it was meant to use to decide cases and I showed that I was on the self-employed side of the 'grey line'.

    1. Yes. They used to be called Status Inspectors. Such cases were dealt with by a trained, experienced tax inspector. Who knew what they were doing and applied the critera on case by case basis.

      Days long gone. Long fucking gone.

  3. Since the merger , downhill all the way,people promoted 2 grades in one step with no tax experience , managers parachuted in from DWP with no tax knowledge or intention of gaining any , offices in Wembley and Uxbridge headed by someone ex baggage control at Heathrow starting discussions with "as a layman " and then overseeing "quality " checks on work they couldnt even understand let alone do , the less contact with front line work the more you get paid and zero activity on large trader tax avoidance , will only get worse for staff and "customers "

    1. It's because it's all 'competency' based rubbish.

      No clue about how to do the jobs themselves. The Job specification is just vague, meaningless shite written by a numpty with buzzwords thrown in. Relying on others (who havent been promoted), to do the job for them when they show up on the first day.

      As if being a baggage handler, DWP manager, fucking VOA or Land Registry manager allows them to be a senior manager somewhere else. Then they spend 12 months wrecking everything, then move on.

      This is why HMRC is in the state it's in. Decent people have long gone now. It's just the overpromoted arsewits that are left.

      These 'initiatives' would have been thrown out of the window before they got anywhere. As there would have been proper checks and balances in place.

      I wouldn't hold my breath on things improving.

      All this is, links to the post about increased compliance yield. Window dressing. They don't give a shite what it means as long as the statistics look good. Then they will get another promotion on the back of it.

      HMRC is a top ten penguin friendly employer. Smile for the magazine photo.

      Which is why we see two grade promotions in ten minutes. Time and time again.

  4. I sat on interview panels for a specific job within HMRC, a job that I held. I was accompanied by other interviewers who did not know the job. All they cares about was that the competencies were good, and more than one would not listen to me saying that a few were not suited to the job, for several reasons, but the scoring method on competences meant that a few were recommended for the job.

    God help my (former) colleagues if some of these joined their teams.