HMRC to contact MLR registered businesses

The Revenue will start a programme of telephoning businesses registered with and supervised by HMRC under the Money Laundering Regulations (MLR) 2007.

The calls will be part of a compliance programme to gather up-to-date information about registered business’ activities.

Accountants registered with HMRC will be those who are not members of a main professional body.

During the phone calls...

Continued...

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Comments

MLR registration    6 thanks

mikefleming3028 | | Permalink

Would it not be a better use of time and resource if HMRC used their massive computer system to ID those "agents" who are not registered to enable them to be made compliant prior to commencing such a time consuming and expensive exercise. From my personal experience there are still a huge number of "accountants" out there who are not registered with HMRC and seem to be getting away with it right under the noses of those who are charged with maintaining the system.  Come on HMRC use some common sense in the exercise of your "Care and Management" powers.

 

ShirleyM's picture

Just to clarify

ShirleyM | | Permalink

We were contacted by our supervisory body, not HMRC, but the telephone check was simple and straightforward, and as mentioned ... pain free :)

HMRC to contact MLR registered businesses    6 thanks

DVFields | | Permalink

How will HMRC confirm their identity? If someone calls me suggesting they are from the Revenue and then asks me for my security information; well they have done well to get that far!

End of telephone conversation. No exceptions, ever!

Regards

Dave

 

Money Laundering    3 thanks

thegable | | Permalink

HMRC would be more effective chasing tax debts than wasting their time with useless red-tape box ticking forays.

What I don't understand....    1 thanks

jamiea4f | | Permalink

Is why HMRC are giving out licences to "accountants" who aren't (properly) qualified.  It's a bit like the law society giving out licences to unqualified solicitors.  Stinks of another money making scheme by HMRC to add to all of their others.  

 

Jamie Crampton, ACMA.

Licence    1 thanks

thegable | | Permalink

HMRC doesn't issue licences - but you're right, it's a scam..if you offer bookkeeping etc services you must register with HMRC in respect of MLR - naturally for a handsome fee - for which you get precisely nothing.

Security    3 thanks

smallbeancounter | | Permalink

@DV Fields- I agree. If anyone calls in to our office and wants to talk about confidential matters our standard procedure is to take the name of the person and their extension number, but not the telephone number. We then call them back using the number in our files. No other procedure is secure. And this has actually worked on one occasion to prevent a direct phishing attempt from India!

johnjenkins's picture

Perhaps    1 thanks

johnjenkins | | Permalink

someone has moaned about paying a fee and this is HMRC way of justifying it.

Nick Graves's picture

Nah

Nick Graves | | Permalink

thegable wrote:

HMRC would be more effective chasing tax debts than wasting their time with useless red-tape box ticking forays.

 

It's far easier to get a onner out of a bunch of compliant beancounters than it is to get it out of impoverished, indebted taxpayers.

 

 

It clearly helps to be clueless    1 thanks

sherodwilliams | | Permalink

 It never ceases to fascinate me that those firms who take their responsibilities seriously no matter how mundane or irksome they may be , register as necessary with supervisory bodies, undertake proper training etc etc then face the possibility of being un-competitive in terms of fee costs when compared with those businesses offering similar services and whom HMRC admit are potentially clueless with regard to the ML regulations. Let's face it, if they are clueless about one set of regulations then they are probably the same across the whole practice. But never mind that, they can keep trading by playing a "dangerous game" when the man from HMRC phones & is told " Oh yes we have a system in place with a manual & update training every year etc " " we have know your client notes on our files and we always ensure that we have taken ID properly from clients" Are HMRC really that astute as to be able to tell at the end of a telephone who is & who is not simply a convincing liar?  Meanwhile those of us registered with ICAEW / ACCA etc can always look forward to a good grilling at our cyclical quality assurance visits. Bottom line is that unless HMRC put in place a different method of initiating visits to those registered with them it may well prove worthwhile to be clueless? This is surely a case of one Government department being charged with a responsibility to monitor the requirements set out by another Government department but being unable to effectively do so.

,

Jamiea4f    7 thanks

Donald6000 | | Permalink

Can you tell me why it is that chartered accountants have this extraordinary thing about "unqualified" accountants when some of the practices of chartered accountants are just about as low on the scale as they can be. Please don't tell me that choirs of angels should sing chartered accountants to their rest.

When the legislation came in I informed all my clients (all one or two of them because I was 57 years of age at the time and am now 62) that I would now no longer practice as a tax adviser and I would not charge for assisting people with their tax returns; I would assist them as a welfare rights adviser and provide a free service as a volunteer. Apparently HMRC were perfectly satisfied with this methodology.

As to the unqualified bit, first of all I am ex Revenue myself with experience of most of the areas that the Revenue would have covered in the 1980's period, including investigations; I am a BA(Hons) Accounting graduate with a Foundation Certificate in Accounting. I hold a Diploma in English Law from the Open University.

I choose not to be licensed by HMRC because I have too few clients to matter. I don't want to pay within the hundreds of pounds when I came keep my skillset up for nothing; my work is professional but non chargeable. I try to adhere to high standards and I object to so called qualifieds lording it over other folk, who often do a better job than the qualifieds.

I would rather than qualifieds had not had a humility bypass when they come to describe those whom they think are lesser on the scale than them.

 

 

johnjenkins's picture

@donald6000

johnjenkins | | Permalink

I think the point Jamie was trying to make was that a butcher can pay a fee and be registered under MLR. I think the reference to qualfied was regarding ability rather than letters. Of course it is a tax by the back door. Anything that come sfrom Euroland that can give HMRC a few bob will be jumped on.

Now hands up those that think their own bodies aren't worth the fees.

JohnJenkins

Donald6000 | | Permalink

In that case I can confirm that there are many people of ability within the unqualified sector as well as within the qualified sector. I certainly would not do anything to disgrace any client and I never have done in all my working life.But my working life has been spent doing accounts and tax returns, both for IR and for professional firms.

I think what IR should be looking at, is whether, given the scope of the money laundering regulations, unqualified people actually have any ability and deserve to be registered. If butchers, bakers and candlestick makers are being allowed by IR/HMRC to register then obviously the system is incorrect and needs beefing up. In my own case, as someone who is ex Revenue I would have thought they would have known that I am not going to corrupt the system.

 

 

Giving Security Information to Cold Callers?    2 thanks

Michael56J | | Permalink

DVFields wrote:

How will HMRC confirm their identity? If someone calls me suggesting they are from the Revenue and then asks me for my security information; we'll they have done well to get that far!

End of telephone conversation. No exceptions, ever!

Regards

Dave

 

I totally agree, Dave. Surely part of the MLR suite of legislation is not giving out information to cold callers.

When will HMRC realise that accountants have the right to ask them security questions if they call unannounced?

Michael

 

johnjenkins's picture

@Donald

johnjenkins | | Permalink

You're right, but HMRC now see most Accountants as manipulators and make rules accordingly.

This has been the problem with governments since Maggie was kicked out. Rules are now made to suite the minority not the majority.

Perhaps, finally, with the help of UKIP something will be done to reverse this nonsense

patricia caputo's picture

Qualifications

patricia caputo | | Permalink

I do look at Accounting Web from time to time when there is an interesting topic and have noticed that, no matter what that topic may be, the dialogue seems to gradually move towards a bickering between those with qualifications and those without.

I do not think that HMRC refer to qualified or unqualified agents but rather to those who are affiliated and unaffiliated. Maybe I have missed something (and I am sure that someone will be quick to put me right if I have) but would the issue be that affiliated agents are regulated and non affiliated agents are not?

The previous statement notwithstanding surely there will be many, many, diligent, non affiliated agents who undertake CPD sufficient and beyond and who adhere to high, self imposed, ethical standards?

Reading all the posts that have turned to this topic it seems that those who have spent many years studying and taking exams and paying annual subscriptions and whose professional bodies "take on" HMRC over new and unworkable practises, the results of which benefit all, feel somewhat aggrieved.  

Dare I say that that is understandable?

 

 

johnjenkins's picture

@Patricia

johnjenkins | | Permalink

These days, in order to practice as an Accountant you either have to be affiliated through an Accountancy body or through Customs and excise which means HMRC know exactly who they are dealing with. Accountancy bodies are regulated by their own standards but those that are registered with Customs are only affiliated by their own standards.

The state of HMRC today shows quite clearly that the "bodies" are either not doing enough or HMRC can't be bothered with them.

Blame is easy to apportion but when you see this kind of thing going on (I refer to the post) it beggars belief.

Does anyone in HMRC REALLY think that practicing Accountants are that stupid as not to verify a new client in some way shape or form. AH hang on, of course, unless you do it the HMRC way then you can't be doing it properly, and for that, no doubt our bodies and customs will increase the fees.

MLR

spurs1952 | | Permalink

Oh goody goody, I shall look so forward to receiving a call.  *************!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ID    1 thanks

Andrew288 | | Permalink

How do you respond to (say) Nationwide who ask for earnings details with letters which state 'your client has given us permission....' but do not prove that the client has actually given them permission? They rang me on Monday, I asked how I could identify the caller and he said 'that's not how data protection works'. That shortened the call considerably.

We give the information to the client if they have not previously told us about their intentions. Client ignorance I can understand but the attitude of the lenders concerns me.

johnjenkins's picture

Normally

johnjenkins | | Permalink

financial institutions send a photocopy of the clients authorisation. Most cases, these days, with 65% or above LTV lenders will ask for SA302's from HMRC. Why they bother with us anymore I do not know.

It's amazing how all "those in authority" expect us to comply with their rules and when we start having a go back they get the hump.

southsands@south-sands.co.uk's picture

Well said    1 thanks

southsands@sout... | | Permalink

thegable wrote:

HMRC would be more effective chasing tax debts than wasting their time with useless red-tape box ticking forays.

Here we are in the worst recession since the 1920s and this is where HMRC wants to concentrate their efforts.Just imagine what would happen to a real business if it ignored chasing its debts and concentrated solely on red tape.This is what happens when the country is being led by wet behind the ears public school boys.

 

Nick Graves's picture

It's worse than that    1 thanks

Nick Graves | | Permalink

<a href="mailto:southsands@south-sands.co.uk" rel="nofollow">southsands@south-sands.co.uk</a> wrote:

thegable wrote:

HMRC would be more effective chasing tax debts than wasting their time with useless red-tape box ticking forays.

Here we are in the worst recession since the 1920s and this is where HMRC wants to concentrate their efforts.Just imagine what would happen to a real business if it ignored chasing its debts and concentrated solely on red tape.This is what happens when the country is being led by wet behind the ears public school boys.

 

...in that a lot of those wet behind the ear types have swallowed the neo-Keynesian fairy tale and still fail to understand the economic effects of a value-added job in the real economy and a value-subtracted one in Her Majesty's Redtape Collective.

Meanwhile the beancounting community bickers like Laurel & Hardy as usual , as to whose piece of wallpaper has most kudos, and lets them all get away with the nonsense. Divide & conquer...

 

 

rslosek's picture

I received a letter today

rslosek | | Permalink

I'll get back to you about what it was like. Painless I hope.