AAMs, helplines and other complaints

I currently have two complaints working with two very helpful, but seemingly hamstrung AAMs in HMRC.

One is reasonably complex in that a non resident requries confirmation of that status for an overseas authority who refuses to accept the notion of Self Assessment and is insisting on a tangible letter from HMRC. Agent line can't help so put me thru to a rather rude technician whow as "happy to answer my questions" of which there were none, just the reqest for a letter or a contact at the non-resident centre. the best she could do was the phone number for the NRL section who didn't answer the phone. I thought this was just me until the AAM I passed it to told me the exact same thing, she CANNOT get a phone number to speak to the non-resident centre and had tried the same NRL route with no joy.

 

The second is the transfer of unused MCA in a deceased case where we act for the widow. this has been running as post and phone calls since November last year. the usual "we can't deal with it without a 64-8 for the Estate" then that got lost. just spoken to the AAM who picked it up who told me it was working with the complaint  section who have a 50 day turnaround". Again she can't contact by phone and has to rely on them responding to her email, which she hopes will be less than 50 days.  

Conversely i also have third complaint dealt with by the AAM but followed by a compensation claim that has now been acknowledged three times by three different offices. Still not seen the colour of the money though.

Mr Redford is this really a service you're providing, either externally or internally? i will continue to apply for compensation in EVERY case where i believe HMRC have created additonal costs through delay/bad processes/ineptitude. Perhaps one day someone in the higher echelons of the Dept will realise these working methods simply do NOT work and are costing money.

Comments
johnjenkins's picture

@Chris

johnjenkins | | Permalink

Do you really expect anything other than what you are getting. HMRC staff are cut to the bone and being asked to act as go-betweens for the government and tax payers. It will get worse and I really can't see it getting any better until we have full Agent strategy up and running. Still maybe that's what they are waiting for.

Agent Strategy

Chris Wise | | Permalink

wouldn't help any of the above clients unless it involves giving agents headed notepaper to do their own letters.

Yes I do expect more. I expect that if I need to speak to someone on a technical matter that is available within a reasonable timeframe, and it isn't available fromt he Agent Helpline or the technicians unless your tax knowledge is so low you know less than they do, in which case you really need to question if you're in the right job.

Yes I do expect that if I write to HMRC and they decide they can't reply to me because the 64-8 is missing in action, that they exercise some common sense and write directly to the individual/company with their response. I do NOT expect that they write back to me sayign "sorry nothing we can do you don't have authority".

Yes i do expect that if HMRC trumpet a new service that actually works (like AAMs) that their staff have the resouces to make it continue to work, in the above example an internal phone directory.

 

What i do not expect is what seems to be happening is the preparation of all telephone services to be outsourced abroad, where the person you're speaking to can only read from a  script, can't put you through to anyone who can help you and doesn;t have a clue what you're asking about.

I have the same problem

rkpgreen | | Permalink

I have the same problem with delays in signing Non-resident forms, but discover that Liverpool is (or was?) the specialist office dealing with such letters or signing such certificates.  Delay in the HMRC reply causes delay in our client receiving payments from customers.

I am told that letters marked "Urgent", or sent "Special Delivery", or even marked "Complaint - URGENT"  all go into the usual mail system and take around a month before they are then shunted on to a different office's queue for action after a further month.

Have you actually received any cash compensation yet?

 

compo

Chris Wise | | Permalink

I have in the past when i've made claims, but more recent claims appear to be sitting in a black hole. i expect compensation for HMRC cock-ups will go the same way as ESC A19 and be rigorously rejected. In the above instance tho the client was due a PAYE refund and we sent their written authority for it to be paid to our client account as they had ceased trading and the account was closed.

First request ignored due to lack of 64-8, then they sent a cheque to the company for part of it, the rest was with someone else because it was an incorrect penalty. the AAM managed to get it coordnated but we still wasted time because they didn;t deal with the first request in acordance with the written instruction they had been given

Update

Chris Wise | | Permalink

spoke to the AAM on Friday and my urgent letter was posted out on Thursday, they refused to fax or scan it to me so my client could at least have the comfort it had been done.

Nothing received yet, but then i don't expect it will be for at least a fortnight. Absolutely appalling system.

Update II

Chris Wise | | Permalink

The letter arrived and was dated 6 June so the office clearly misled the AAM whenthey said it had been sent out on the 31 May. along with that which was requested was a letter "telling me off" for using the non-residents email facility which apparently is only to be used for requesting Certificates of Residence, and anything outside of a request for a Certificate of Residence is discarded because people will send all sorts of requests via email. 

So there we have it folks, confirmation that HMRC "discard" post if it isn't send in their equired format. Notwithstanding why would someone claiming to be non-resident and using a part of the website headed up "email enquiries for non-UK residents" be requesting a Cert of Residence?

 

On the other AAM issue that has been rumbling along since Nov last year, the AAM tells me the complaint is dated May and complaints team is dealing with complaints from March, and any post attached to it will be sitting in the backlog with the complaint. so post is pulled to sit around in a new backlog. Great!

 

Compensation

Received cheque for full amount claimed

johnjenkins's picture

Thanks a lot Chris

johnjenkins | | Permalink

Where exactly has your compensation come from? lol. That's not a DC lol.

"The letter arrived and was

david5541 | | Permalink

"The letter arrived and was dated 6 June so the office clearly misled the AAM whenthey said it had been sent out on the 31 May. along with that which was requested was a letter "telling me off" for using the non-residents email facility which apparently is only to be used for requesting Certificates of Residence, and anything outside of a request for a Certificate of Residence is discarded because people will send all sorts of requests via email. 

So there we have it folks, confirmation that HMRC "discard" post if it isn't send in their equired format. Notwithstanding why would someone claiming to be non-resident and using a part of the website headed up "email enquiries for non-UK residents" be requesting a Cert of Residence?"

 

sadly hmrc have this as a standard postage procedure:

a)using second class post

b)using a typing pool so that the date the letter is dictated(the date of the letter)..... is at least 5 maybe 6 days before the signatory gets it as far as the post room for outward conveyence-of course

soon no doubt HMRC will "offshore" its typing pool to the third world like most banks and insurance companies have avoiding even more payroll and consequential vat/expenditure taxes.  

 

add to that the cheap outsourced telephone system they use that sums it up.

AAMs and the Non Residence certificate issue

Colin Lothian | | Permalink

My experience is that the AAM service can cut through the log jam that is the on-line Certificate of Residence application. Part of the problem is that the staff on the Agent Helpline do not have access to the Residence forms even when it is claimed they have been sent out.

The second problem is that HMRC is sending these out second class which in practice means they take at least seven days to arrive. The stated deadline of working these within 15 days of application is being exceeded.

Use the AAM service and if you get nowhere then raise formal complaints through normal channels.

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