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HMRC says it with flowers

What do you do when you have to apologise to a client?

Didn't find your answer?

Following the news that HMRC spent more than £10,000 on 'apology' flowers to taxpayers for errors, what have you done to say sorry to clients? Ever delivered a bouquet? Perhaps a heartfelt handwritten card? Or does picking up the phone do the job?

Or do you even need to offer a grand (grovelling) gesture like flowers? Are you a shrug of the shoulders and move-on kind of accountant?

And as we're talking about it, have you or your clients ever received a bouquet from HMRC?

Replies (10)

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RLI
By lionofludesch
01st Nov 2018 09:51

Surprised it's not more given their error rate.

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By andy.partridge
01st Nov 2018 09:59

Only £10k. Clearly they have their favourites.

A sincere personal apology is much better than an insincere gift designed purely to get you off the hook.

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RLI
By lionofludesch
01st Nov 2018 10:04

These apologies didn't happen to be to wives of HMRC officers, round about their birthdays, anniversaries or Valentine's Day, do they ?

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By Red Leader
01st Nov 2018 10:09

I did send flowers once to a client who I had, let us say, raised my voice to.

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By dmitchell
01st Nov 2018 10:32

I had accidentally post-dated a form for an SDLT refund.
After several weeks of not hearing anything, the client contacted HMRC (after I had been told I had no authority to contact them on his behalf) and was informed of my mistake.

Once I'd checked back to the copy I'd kept in his file, I admitted to the client that I had messed up, apologised and let him know I'd resent another (correct!) form the same day.

He thanked me for my honesty and said it was hard to come by nowadays. A sincere apology, in this case, was all that was needed.

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By ireallyshouldknowthisbut
01st Nov 2018 15:45

I frequently ask for a written apologies for their errors, which invariably the operator agrees too...........but I don't think I have ever seen one sent out.

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By Vaughan Blake1
01st Nov 2018 15:58

What if you admit the error, send a nice bunch of flowers, and then the client speaks to a 'bloke in the pub' and decides to sue you. Have you invalidated your PII cover by admitting liability?

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Replying to Vaughan Blake1:
RLI
By lionofludesch
01st Nov 2018 16:03

Ach - the flowers will be dead before it gets to court.

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Jennifer Adams
By Jennifer Adams
01st Nov 2018 17:10

At first I thought this was a joke! Flowers from HMRC? ! Never heard of that before. Rather a waste of taxpayers money would have thought.

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By VATs-enough
01st Nov 2018 21:57

£10k spend on flowers is a drop in the ocean of wasted tax payer money by HMRC.

This is an old trick. Look at this shiny thing over here, so you don’t notice the colossal sums wasted over there.

Tens if not hundreds of millions of pounds wasted on poor contract negotiations for real estate and IT, and don’t get me started on the bought in consultants and non-jobs that add no value to a tax collecting department.

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