HMRC plans three-day online downtime

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HMRC’s online services will be shut down for three days later this month for routine maintenance.

Online services are expected to close from 6am on Friday 11 October and re-open on...

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Nick Huber
Freelance journalist
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02nd Oct 2013 15:44

we welcome inmprovements and additional services

lets not get in a muck sweat about it now , doubtless i will later !

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By Kazmc
03rd Oct 2013 08:36

Do you think............

Do you think this will mean we will not be able to make RTI submissions? How about the dreaded 'on or before' ruling?..........

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03rd Oct 2013 09:28

PAYE service is not affected

According to HMRC's Service Availability page the PAYE service is not part of the downtime work so there should be no problem making RTI submissions.

For those services that are affected you will still be able to make a submission, you just won't get a response during the downtime.

I'm awaiting confirmation from HMRCs developer support team that the PAYE service is not included.

Gary

Sage (UK) Ltd

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03rd Oct 2013 09:54

EDIT: PAYE will be affected...

I've just received conformation that the PAYE service will be affected by the downtime. However, as I stated above, you should still be able to make submissions during this time but you won't receive a confirmation that it was successful or not until the downtime ends.

Gary

Sage (UK) Ltd

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By Kazmc
03rd Oct 2013 10:08

Thanks Gary...

With SAGE I thought the system usually 'polls' until a receipt from HMRC is confirmed. If confirmation is not received you are usually asked to stop the submission & try again later. Will this still be the case during this downtime? Thanks very much Gary

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04th Oct 2013 16:01

Further update from HMRC

HMRC have now published the timeframe for the scheduled upgrade for the PAYE service, and it is from Wed 9th October until Tues 15th October.

You will still be able to make submissions during this time but you will not receive any response to indicate if it was successful or not.

@Kazmc, when you make a submission from within our software it will wait for a response from the service and then present that response as either a success or fail message. During this maintenance period the program will not receive any response and so it will continuously poll. However, when the program starts to poll you can use the 'Check again later' button which will immediately disconnect from the submission process and you can then reconnect later (after the service is back up and running) to check the status of the submission.

This will allow you to make your RTI submissions on whatever date you would normally need to do them by.

Regards

Gary

Sage (UK) Ltd

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By Kazmc
07th Oct 2013 08:21

Thankyou

That's brilliant thanks for that Gary

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07th Oct 2013 14:54

And if we don't

..... click for "Check again later", will our computers keep polling every 12 seconds till 15th October? All of them? And will this eventually bring down the HMRC system?

Fingers crossed ......

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12th Oct 2013 07:58

Hopefully your software has a facility of maximum polling time before time out and an incremental algorithm so it polls say at 12s, then 24s followed by 48s etc.

Then you can check later to determine the outcome of the earlier submission, this is formally known as a Data request.

 

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10th Oct 2013 14:23

Will they finally give agents access to same data as taxpayers?

Via my agent login, I can see tax payments made on SA and CT, but not PAYE and VAT. If I can't reconcile PAYE payments, I used to call HMRC and they'd tell me over the phone what payments had been allocated to each tax year. Then they stopped providing this over the phone and insisted on writing or faxing it to agents. Now they refuse even that and, when I call them, I get the response “your clients should know what they have paid”. Doh! HMRC have no understanding that I’m trying to reconcile what my client thinks has been paid to what HMRC record.

HMRC do offer a list of payments online, but only via the business’ own login. Why not to agents? Smaller businesses are often run by entrepreneurs who have no interest or understanding of the tax process and they, guess what, hire accountants to handle that important role for them.

For HMRC to refuse to tell a taxpayer’s appointed representative what payments HMRC record as having been paid on their account must surely breach the terms of the taxpayers’ charter?

I know that HMRC are rolling out a big update to the agents’ login system sometime in the next year or two (if we’re lucky) and that this will include all sorts of useful features, many of which require huge re-writing of the software and much user testing. ...BUT, their existing system already shows PAYE payments to the taxpayer and also shows payments on other taxes (SA and CT) to agents, so surely it’s not too complicated to merge these functions and show agents what has been paid on PAYE?

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10th Oct 2013 15:16

Downtime now cancelled

HMRC have cancelled the planned downtime for this weekend. The PAYE service update starting from the 9th to the 15th has also been cancelled:

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/news/online-service-upgrade-postponed.htm

Regards

Gary

Sage (UK) Ltd

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10th Oct 2013 16:34

Joke!

You can't make this stuff up!  What a shower!

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11th Oct 2013 09:54

Downtime now cancelled!

HMRC announced that they've postponed the downtime now, and all services will be running as usual .

"Whenever we undertake maintenance work we run rigorous tests beforehand. These checks were completed last night and we discovered that there was a problem and that part of the upgrade wouldn’t have been complete by Monday morning as previously announced," it said.

See this notice from the Revenue's website.

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