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General Chat Thread, Received an 80p Tax Demand?! in General; Last week my wife received a hefty tax demand. Obviously we were worried and started working through their labyrinthine calculation ...
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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    Received an 80p Tax Demand?!

    Last week my wife received a hefty tax demand. Obviously we were worried and started working through their labyrinthine calculation illustration.
    We worked out that they had calculated her tax based on her earning way more than she actually did, so armed with wages slips and P60 she phoned up to sort it out.

    Are all staff at HMRC so condescending and rude? Not willing to admit that they might have, just possibly made a mistake?
    Eventually the harridan at the end of the phone conceded that they had actually made a mistake, seemingly her taxable earnings figure they used had been plucked out of the air.

    So was the matter resolved there? No, of course not, the tax was recalculated and my wife was told she owed....wait for it...80p! Yes 80p. In addition to this, a new demand would be sent out. My wife asked, sensibly in my opinion, whether it was actually worth sending the demand as after the cost of paper, toner, envelope and postage, they probably would only be a couple of pence up on the deal. But no, she was told that she owed HMRC tax and it must be collected.

    Received the demand this morning, think I might have it framed.

    Idiots.

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    Gibbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sparkeh View Post
    Are all staff at HMRC so condescending and rude? Not willing to admit that they might have, just possibly made a mistake?
    Yep, totally incompetent and refuse to acknowledge they make mistakes.

    Last year they sent me a tax bill for over £2000 and demanded payment as part of a self assessment tax return. I'm on PAYE as an employee so don't need to do SA. Cue lots of phone calls (most of the time spent on hold):

    Duration: 14 minutes
    Duration: 26 minutes
    Duration: 6 minutes
    Duration: 28 minutes
    Duration: 54 minutes
    Duration: 6 minutes
    Duration: 36 minutes

    which got me nowhere. They wouldn't give me any information at all, suggesting I "talk to my accountant". I didn't even have one. They said I did.

    They grudgingly gave me their details, an outfit in Newtown, mid Wales (quite some way away from where I live).

    Meanwhile the threats demanding payment continued, along with the daily penalty of £10 a day.

    The accountant confirmed that I wasn't his client, did a bit of digging but couldn't come up with any reason why. All he said was "do not pay, you'll never get the money back".

    He suggested sending copies of all my wage slips and P60's going back years to HMRC. After having to do it twice to two different addresses I finally got a written apology and explanation - they'd put someone else's NI number onto my tax details, someone with the same name as me, similar DOB but who did self assessment.

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    That's awful. Looks like we got off lightly.
    Its just the arrogant attitude that really gets to me; they treat everyone like they are tax dodgers. They must have special training or something.

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    Looks like nothing has changed there then!

    I had to call them about 10 years ago. The woman I spoke to spoke to me like I was an idiot who she really didn't have the time of day for. In the end I was so flabbergasted that I literally said " who or what the hell do you think you are talking to?? "

    She didn't skip a beat! Just carried on as before.

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    HaleStorm's Avatar
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    send them a bag of 80 one pence pieces?

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    JJonas's Avatar
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    Send them a cheque for 81p.

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    witch's Avatar
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    Every year they miscalulate mrwITch's tax and plan to take out the underpayment from next year's salary. This year, mrwITch was made redundant at the end of March, so he wasn't earning or paying PAYE so that they could claw back the money they say he owes.
    So...they sent us a tax demand for £800
    How on earth is he supposed to pay that when he hasnt got a job? He rang up for an explanation as to how they reached that figure - the woman didnt listen and just sent him confirmation of what he had earned last year with an admonishment NOT to lose his P60 again! (he hadnt lost it).
    He explained that he was out of work and asked if it was possible to pay in installments. They said no! Beggars belief really

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    CHR1S's Avatar
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    When I was a joint partner of a LLP and relinquished my position I had to provide the companies books for 3 years after.....

    Erm, I don't work for them, I don't think I am allowed their books.

    After 3 years of sending self certs of 0 along with my PAYE details they finally gave in.

    They just didn't get I couldn't provide info, I had all the documentation of my surrender of my half of the LLP, dated, witnessed... nooo, not good enough....

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    hardtailstar's Avatar
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    They once taxed me over half of my wages, I rang up and it took at least 3-4 months for them to admit that they had made a mistake and they would refund me the money, ended up getting the money back about 6 months later.

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    I think a lot of these problems are due to the complexity of the UK's tax system in general. It's probably one of the most complex in the world and even with all the IT working in the background, it's only as good as the data that's entered into it - i.e. human error is usually to blame.

    Common sense doesn't always apply, despite ridiculously low demands of 80p. Then again, if everyone in the country owed 80p, it would be a pretty big sum of money. It really depends how you look at it.

    Government directives are to reduce the deficit as much as possible, as quickly as possible and chasing tax payers for every pence is important. I do agree however that HMRC need a refresh in policy as sending strongly worded letters from the start is obviously going to get a negative response. I think HMRC might be surprised that addressing people properly gets a far more positive answer and problems resolved quicker.

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