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 February 2011

The One Way Street

My thanks to a loyal reader who sent me the following examples (I have redacted certain details) about communication delays when dealing with HMRC:

"I wrote to the correct tax office in May 2010 to request a tax refund, enclosing P45/P60 details to support my simple calculation £** overpayment. Cheque received yesterday, 8 months later. No interest and had to be chased twice in writing.

I am chasing a VAT overpayment of over £**K for a client. Has to be reduced to £**K as only 4 years can be allowed (HMRC can go back 6 I believe). This is a corner shop. £**K is 2 years entire net profit. Why?

Letter with correct VAT sent 5 Dec 2010. HMRC is currently (as of this morning) reading the post from last week of November. Why?

I am working with Tribunal service for a client charged with penalties of £*K for three missing CIS returns. He earns £*K a year. HMRC supposed to have 42 days to respond to me and Tribunal. Have so far been allowed 150 days. My clients haven't slept for 4 months. Why?

Client been given 7 days by Debt Enforcement office to avoid seizing of assets. Investigation so far shows HMRC has 'lost' all payments made in 2008 and 2009; that it has no record of the telephone time to pay agreement and has also lost the P35s sent twice by recorded delivery. My 64-8 from August 2010 also not processed or lost. (along with 3 or 4 other 64-8s)

I only have 50 clients and these are four different ones I am dealing with this month alone....

It does seem to be rather a "one way" street when communicating with HMRC, in that the taxpayer gets jumped on if he/she misses a deadline but not vice versa.

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. Maybe it is time to take a leaf out the middle east's book and start having direct protests towards the senior managers of HMRC.

    Maybe we could force them out of office.

  2. "I am chasing a VAT overpayment of over £**K for a client",

    Take your time. If they owe you, they wont break into a sweat.

  3. I agree with all the points made in this post. This is surprising ( or perhaps not) in that I work in debt recovery for HMRC. A constant refrain when speaking to the taxpayer on the doorstep is that no warning letter has been received, correspondence sent in months earlier has gone unanswered, returns are unprocessed etc etc. When pre collection activities were carried out at local offices, cases were checked, and I could have confidence that A. Taxpayers were aware that debts had got to local recovery stage, and B. That the debt was correctly due. I no longer have any confidence that this is the case. It seems that large parts of the organisation are close to meltdown.

  4. Lesley Strathie will strenuously deny that any part of HMRC is in meltdown... but many thousands of dissatisfied taxpayers and claimants (aka "customers") and HMRC employees would disagree. Who do you believe is telling the truth?

  5. Anon @ 23:15...

    For those of you who recall the Gulf war, Lesley Strathie is HMRC's answer to "Comical Ali".

  6. HMRC... the mother of all disasters!!!

  7. HMRC is top good dept. Free teeth, glasses and pills and money for disabled wives. Also, with disabled sticker park anywhere for free.