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Have HMRC totally lost it ?

Have HMRC totally lost it ?

We have today received copy 2011-12 TR £100 penalty notifications for a number of clients dated 29 January 2013. All of which were filed last week and accepted by HMRC before the deadline.So we are supposed to waste time and money appealing these whilst fending off perplexed clients who will of course have received their copies. Great. This has to be a deliberate ploy to annoy what they perceive as last minute Annies otherwise one would be inevitably drawn to the conclusion that they've finally lost the plot. Anyone else received any ?

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04th Feb 2013 12:12

Paper returns?

I'm sure you've checked this, but they're not from paper returns, are they? I've known clients take your printout and send it in to/drop it off at HMRC's offices before now...

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05th Feb 2013 09:40

1 was a paper return sent back on the 17th by me, the other 2 were filed online by me on the 29th, the very same day the penalties were issued.  Hopefully it's only a small blip, but either way the penalties were dated the 29th which means they were probably set up by the Revenue's computer at least a week earlier.  We shall wait eagerly for today's post!!

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By ACDWebb
05th Feb 2013 10:48

Unless there is a reasonable excuse

for example it is on HMRC exceptions list, then the one you filed as paper on 17 Jan will suffer a penalty.

The question Ardeninian asked was "did your client send the paper return to HMRC?" If they did then your filing elecronically later will make no difference and they will be stuck with a penalty for having submitted a paper return after 31 Oct 2012 (the deadline for paper returns)

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05th Feb 2013 10:59

Sorry, you've got the wrong end of the stick.  The paper return was on the exception list and therefore the deadline was the 31st January.  It was filed, in paper format by me.  The client did not send it direct to HMRC.  The other 2 were not on the exception list, and were not originally filed by the client, but were filed by me, online, before the deadline.  In all 3 cases, no penalty will apply!

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By ACDWebb
05th Feb 2013 11:11

If it's on the exception list

you normally have to file a reasonable excuse quoting the exception.

The other point was just to confirm that the client did not get hold of the wrong end of the stick and somehow manage to send their copy to HMRC as well. If not, then perhaps they have lost it for the last two.

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05th Feb 2013 14:55

There is no excuse other than the fact they've sent an incorrect penalty out before the filing deadline was even reached, so whilst an appeal has already been sent to them, I have absolutely no doubt it will be squashed!

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By BKD
05th Feb 2013 15:51

We still don't know...

...whether the client (or someone else) filed a paper version of the return - we are told that this did not happen, but how can we be certain?

If the penalty is for late-filing of a paper return, I would certainly appeal it on the grounds that it had been a mistake and that the intention had always been to e-file. But the filing deadline for paper returns is 31 Oct so a penalty issued on 29 Jan is otherwise OK. I haven't seen a recent SA penalty notice, but do they not specify the relevant filing date? If so, that would make it clear as to whether HMRC had jumped the gun.

What are the submission dates on HMRC records?

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By ACDWebb
05th Feb 2013 18:39

As above

IF a paper return was somehow submitted post 31/10/12 but pre 31/1/13 - because the client misread your transmission letter and posted a copy off to HMRC - then it has been delivered late on paper and as in Chalk TC00338, subsequently submitting electronically cannot overturn the original late paper filing.

But as noted we still don't know if that's what happened. If it did you might try an appeal, but are likely on a hiding to nothing.

Then again there were in the past cases with Trust returns where they were submitted electronically but for some reason had to be rekeyed at HMRC's end, which did on occasion lead to the returns being incorrectly posted as paper instead of electronic submissions. Perhaps it was something like that, but without quizzing HMRC you will not get to the bottom of it.

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06th Feb 2013 11:17

We're running away with this!

THE FACTS are as follows:

2 penalties were for returns that were submitted electronically by the deadline of the 31st January.  Both forms had not, under any circumstances previously been submitted by our clients in paper format, and therfore under no circumstances will the penalties stand.

The other penalty related to a MP and therefore the return had to be filed on paper as there is no possibility of doing it online.  For this return the paper deadline is one and the same as the online deadline, 31st January, and in any event the form was sent to the Tax Office in mid January.  Again, the penalty will not stand.

Appeals against all 3 penalties have been lodged! 

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By BKD
06th Feb 2013 12:00

FACTS

Both forms had not, under any circumstances previously been submitted by our clients in paper format

How do you KNOW that with ABSOLUTE certainty?

More to the point, can you confirm whether or not the penalty notices refer to a filing deadline (and/or alleged date of submission), or do they simply say that the return is late? What date of submission is on HMRC's record?

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06th Feb 2013 12:14

return penalties

I also had a penalty issued for a paper return for a client who was on the exception list.  I even sent in a copy of their exceptions list and a letter of explanation with the return but this was ignored.  Par for the course.  Idiots.

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06th Feb 2013 12:27

were the tax returns required?

I had one case last year where, according to HMRC a tax return wasn't required. We weren't aware of this and, because he's a company director, we submitted a tax return online in January 2012.

HMRC's records indicate that a paper tax return was submitted (it wasn't) and was, therefore late, although a penalty wasn't charged.

I wonder whether this is a similar situation to your cases?

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