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, 1 July 2013


During a debate in the House of Commons last Thursday about HMRC David Gauke used a phrase that I have never heard in relation to tax collection, namely "man-marking".

He is quoted by The Register:
I should explain that HMRC works, with regard to large businesses, by putting in place CRMs — customer relationship managers. Their role is essentially to man-mark the most complex and high-risk taxpayers. In recent years that approach has proved to be effective in getting money in.

HMRC secured £8bn of additional compliance yield from large businesses in 2012-13, and more than £23bn in the past three years. It is an approach that has been endorsed by the OECD.”
When asked by Margaret Hodge about why HMRC hadn’t launched any cases against internet companies such as Amazon and Google, Gauke cited the British variation of the "fifth" (ie taxpayer confidentiality) saying that there was “no way to know what action HMRC has taken with regard to individual companies”.
One of the difficulties that HMRC has is that it is bound by taxpayer confidentiality. It cannot give a running commentary to this House on the action that it takes, but the numbers demonstrate that HMRC is effective in getting money in.

“What we do know is that it has got billions of pounds in additional yield as a consequence of the action that it takes with large businesses as a whole. With reference to HMRC’s performance across the board, additional yield is being achieved year after year, and this Government have provided resources to increase the yield on evasion and avoidance.
He graciously admitted that HMRC can only pursue companies for tax that they actually owed under the law (as opposed to pursuing them for tax that they don't owe).

Who is responsible for passing the laws which HMRC and the companies they deal with have to follow?

That would be our elected representatives!

Tax does have to be taxing.

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  1. There's lies
    Damned lies
    Then there are HMRC statistics

    The lies have more credibility

  2. Taxpayer confidentiality my Aarse!

    Too many cosy deals over a glass of claret or 3 more like!

    Not forgetting the "double agents" from the Big Boys and other outside interests, and WTF are they doing with an Aussie i/c enforcement & compliance, "Blimey Skippy, what's that you say...?"

    Working marvelously with those nice people at the Border said Homer, many years has that been and they see the advantages of closer working and shared whatever, but then if the UKBA hadn't been in such a bad state then it wouldn't have had to be got rid of, and whose fault might that have been? Aaaargh!D'Oh!

  3. PAC has lost its edge and what's this I see? Amyas, dear Amyas. If the PAC is to make any headway and have a worthwhile effect upon HMRC then it must convince HMG to change the interpretation on Taxpayer (note, not Customer!) Confidentiality. Problem seems though that all these Tax Havens are sitting under the good ole' Brit. Protectorate umbrellas.
    You would almost believe there is no Political will to confront the issues despite all the G8 or is it G20 filibuster?
    Of course, if you have the ability and the will, confidentiality means foxtrot oscar dear boy, especially if you don't worry about ECHR, Surveillance Commissioner