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Dealing with HMRC by email

Does this make sense

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When dealing with HMRC by email (usually in the event of an enquiry where you will be dealing with a named individual, HMRC emails include a standard footer which reads; "Unless you are the intended recipient or his/her representative you are not authorised to, and must not, read, copy, distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it"

However, being at the foot of the email, you have to have read through the email to get to that instruction.

Does that make sense?

Replies (11)

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RLI
By lionofludesch
27th Sep 2019 15:16

No, but most caveats are at the bottom of the email. It's not just HMRC.

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Replying to lionofludesch:
By SteveHa
27th Sep 2019 15:30

I appreciate that, but that isn't a caveat. It's an explicit instruction.

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Replying to SteveHa:
My photo
By Matrix
27th Sep 2019 15:35

Funnily enough, my disclaimer does not say that but clients don’t seem to read my emails
at the moment!

I had some 31 Dec accounts to submit today and I put the instruction in the title and the client approved and I have filed! No more Hope you are well and Many thanks or Mr nice guy, just bung the instructions in the title.

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Replying to Matrix:
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By itp3e
04th Oct 2019 11:48

do not worry you are not alone. Indeed nobody ever reads HMRC's emails… Usually because they never send any.

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Replying to lionofludesch:
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By Jdopus
30th Sep 2019 12:29

It's for this reason that I always read emails from the bottom up. It ensures that I'm never at risking of breaching the legal requirements the sender has in place.

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Replying to Jdopus:
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By Rgab1947
04th Oct 2019 11:20

He, he, Chinese are you.

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Replying to Rgab1947:
RLI
By lionofludesch
04th Oct 2019 11:43

Chinese don't read from the bottom up.

Just saying, like.

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By Tax Dragon
27th Sep 2019 15:30

… it's missing the words "other than this sentence" at the end of the piece you quote.

At least, I hope it is, because I was not the intended recipient yet have read that part of the email.

Oops, what have I confessed to....?! OK so sue me.

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By Bob Loblaw
27th Sep 2019 16:51

I mean, technically, you're supposed to read the HMRC protocol about the associated risks of corresponding via email then you advise HMRC that you and your client accept the risks and want to proceed. Then you're supposed to give HMRC details of all of the names and email addresses of every party who is allowed to receive the emails beforehand. So it might just be a case of them hedging their bets that if you get the email, you've agreed to the above and are definitely an allowed recipient. Does seem a little lax, mind you. Perhaps they could spice it up by doing it in 20pt Comic Sans. Something in a hot pink. Maybe that Word Art with the flaming border. Make sure your eye goes there first. Anyone a part of the HMRC forum?

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Psycho
By Wilson Philips
27th Sep 2019 17:00

Is the footer part of the message? If so, my defence is that I am not allowed to read the footer and was therefore unaware that I wasn't allowed to read any other part of the message. But how do I know that I'm not allowed to read the footer unless I read the footer? "Time for bed," said Zebedee.

(Which I think is along the lines of Tax Dragon's thoughts above)

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By CardiffAccountant
07th Oct 2019 20:22

Many years ago, in a former life, my compliance department insisted that when writing to clients (we used paper in those days), we were to END the letter with ‘Please read this letter carefully’.

When I pointed out how absurd this was, I was simply told that the decision had been made, and that I was to follow the policy.

Some things just don’t seem to change.

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