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Claiming Costs from HMRC


We have made a formal complaint and claim for additional costs to HMRC, for a series of delays & cock ups relating to the amendment of a P11D by the uncontactable Sefton Area Office. However the equally unhelpful and useless complaints manager insists that it is HMRC's policy not to pay costs to the accountant ... instead we should present "a receipted invoice addressed to the client" and then they "may" pay if they think it is "reasonable."

I asked the jobsworth complaints manager whether he genuinely expected our client who is already out of pocket ...due to HMRC's delays (claim for repayment made in beginning of November, client yet to receive a penny to date) to fork out for our additional fees, for time we spent due to HMRC's cock up ... with no certainty of reimbursement??? His answer was "this is HMRC policy!" if you want HMRC policy to be changed ..go and speak to your working together group!

My question is has anybody managed to get them to pay you, your costs as agents directly? How did you manage this, and under what circumstances? 




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By Guest1
19th Mar 2010 11:47

Additional costs

I've just completed a claim for these costs but, it was a close call and proved more costly to me!

HMRC are correct in what they say about the procedure and, the uncertainty of whether the client will be repaid -at all, in full, is a concern. From recent correspondence, it seems like HMRC would like to move the goalposts, without prior notification.

Funnily enough my claim (the client's) originated in the Sefton area (coincidence or what?) and, after a couple of attempts to resolve the claim within the district, I had to take it to a "senior" complaints team in Nottingham. The next stage would have been the adjudicator.

The district attempted to say that the (additional) costs arose due to a "system" error (change in computer software in the district) and, as such, that was outside their control. Regretfully, they neither explained this to the client, nor me, at the time, hence the costs were (eventually) repaid.


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22nd Mar 2010 09:46


thanks for sharing your experience, I may have to escalate my complaint to Nottingham too, I would be grateful if you could let me have details of this team.

I am curious to know what other accountants do? Do you bill the client and they get re-imbursed by HMRC?


Welsh Dragon, you frequently comment on how you have sucessfully claimed costs ...any tips or pointers? again .. did they pay you directly? 


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By Guest1
22nd Mar 2010 10:08

I think you will

have to exhaust your complaint in the Sefton area first and, then, you'll be directed to the Nottigham department if you're not happy with the outcome. Actually, having just looked at my file notes, I see that my complaint, made to Nottingham, was actually resolved in Edinburgh!

Bear in mind though -the delays in this case were twofold - one in dealing with the repayment due to the client, the second resolving the question of additional costs, which I'd never had a problem with before. I believe WD holds the view that, the Treasury are trying to hold on to as much money as they can due to the ongoing economic difficulties. You never know, added together, these "savings" could make the figures look healthier. Cynic or what!

Finally, I must credit Nichola Ross-Martin with encouraging me to keep going with this complaint. Before her comment, I was on the verge of putting the idea to bed.


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