SA Final Reminders

I am somewhat perturbed that an elderly client has just received a final reminder for a missed SA final payment. He had made the payment in December which clearly shows on his account and was confirmed by the agent help line.

The explanation that this is a known problem is just not good enough. Do HMRC appreciate the distress such incorrect notices cause taxpayers? Not to mention the cost to produce and send these notices. And also the time, costs and aggravation to agents who have to sort it out.

I could rant on further but what is the point! 

Comments

Elderly Client and Final Demand

vinylnobbynobbs | | Permalink

I have also been contacted by an elderly client who paid her SA in December 2011 and it is showing on her online account, yet she received a final demand for the same amount dated 10 February 2012.

I was unaware that this is a known problem.  Have HMR&C commissioned HAL 9000 as their computer?  Surely simple errors like this can be avoided and surely cannot be blamed on computer error.  Or is this a scheme to make elderly taxpayers pay twice??

petersaxton's picture

Definately not good enough

petersaxton | | Permalink

If it is a known problem then HMRC should check manually before sending any reminders.

Can you imagine if we submitted a tax return which was incorrect and when HMRC chased us we told them "it's a known problem"?

Another "known problem"

david wilks | | Permalink

I deal with the submission of monthly CIS returns. Client receives letter dated 30 December 2011 issued by "PAYE HOPPER E W" which clearly states "You missed the deadline for filing your contractor's monthly return" in bold black type. Next to this is a red box with white print reading "You have missed your deadline" The letter goes on to say penalties will continue to be charged if all the outstanding returns are not submitted.

Needless to say all returns have been submitted on time and the CIS tax paid.

My client was most perturbed and effectively said I had not been submitting his returns. Spoke with HMRC who said - yes, you've guessed it, it is a known problem and the letter should be ignored. He checked my client's record and admitted that nothing was outstanding

It was only after I insisted that a letter of apology be sent my client, which they did, did my client believe all was in order.

What, I wonder, would be the position if, due to this, I had lost my client? Could I sue HMRC for negligence?

 

Known Issue

vinylnobbynobbs | | Permalink

Having e mailed this to our local Working Together co-ordinator, she has just come back to advisng that it is a known issue:

"We have recently been made aware that SA359 (Payment Reminder) may have been issued to some customers who have paid their 2010/11 balancing payment on time. This problem has arisen because payments received on the 14 to 16th December, although credited to the correct customer accounts, were not allocated to outstanding charges until after the reminders had been selected for issue.

Those credits have since been allocated to the charges prior to the February SA Statement run, and you can therefore ignore the demand and give this explanation to your client. "

I do not understand the explanation!  How can money be allocated to an SA account and not clear a charge?

Should I send this to the Daily Mail?

John Stokdyk's picture

Thanks for telling us about this...

John Stokdyk | | Permalink

I just picked up news from a firm called TWP which reports: "A glitch in the tax office’s computer system means letters demanding a penalty fee for late tax returns has been sent out in error to thousands of homes across the UK.

"It has been estimated that up to 17,000 people will receive the letter, demanding the penalty fee of £100, in error, which states that if recipients do not pay the fine debt collection agencies will be sent.
 
"The letters also warn that anyone who is three months or more late in filing their tax returns will face a second fine of £10 per day for up to three months, followed by an additional fine of five percent of the full tax bill after a six month period.
 
"A spokesperson for the taxman has said that the letter mix-up has affected anyone who paid online between December 14th and December 16th 2011, adding: “We have cancelled the penalties and apologise to those affected. If these customers check online, they can see their payments have been correctly credited to their account.”
 
I'm just following up with HMRC to get the details confirmed.

Tax office computer system

david wilks | | Permalink

I really think that, as customers, we should change our supplier.

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