HMRC Tax Credit "Helpline"
Just had a close friend call me in a bit of a distress. He just called to renew his tax credit award and was trying to deduct his Gift Aid payments from his household income. He was turned down flat, being told very clearly that gift aid was not an alowable deduction and that it could only be deducted if he was a higher rate tax payer - no idea where they got that from.
He called three times and was given the same line.
After pointing him to HMRC's own guidance, stating that the grossed up amount of gift aid can be deducted he called them again. This time they were forced to eat humble pie.
Why are these people so clueless? It made £20 a week difference to his tax credit award - peanuts to some, but he has 4 kids and that makes the world of difference. He would have been none the wiser if he didn't have a close friend as a qualified accountant.
To top it all off, they have a pre recorded message saying they can fine up to £3000 for giving them incorrect information. Would be nice if we could do the same to them!