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How much worse can it get?

HMRC issuing 2021 Tax Returns when agreed not to

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Yet more time wasting and incompetence by HMRC.

Having taken the time and trouble to contact HMRC about two clients who no longer require to be issued with Tax Returns, and being told that they will not be, I have found that the inevitable has happened and they have been listed as requiring to submit 2021 Returns. I feel inclined not to do anything about this as it has become clear over the last year or so that communications with HMRC have completely broken down and I would simply be wasting my time trying any more. Communications are absorbed into a Black HMRC Hole never to be responded to or seen again.

I think my policy now will be to wait until someone at HMRC spots a problem and opens up a line of communication, but my guess is that many errors will go unnoticed.

Replies (48)

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By memyself-eye
06th Apr 2021 11:57

You think you've got problems - I'm trying to undo the 50 year old differential pinion nyloc nut from the back of my MGB. Torqued up to 135psi it is and just won't budge.
There, I bet that little gem of information made you happier!

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Replying to memyself-eye:
Tornado
By Tornado
06th Apr 2021 12:10

Are you turning it the right way - it might have a left hand thread?

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Replying to Tornado:
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By memyself-eye
06th Apr 2021 13:32

yes - anti-clockwise but I'm lying on my back, underneath the car in the semi darkness......

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Replying to memyself-eye:
paddle steamer
By DJKL
06th Apr 2021 12:53

I know your pain, getting the drain plug out of my Scimitar to check the diff oil was a labour of Hercules, loose spray, heat, freeze, went on for days, eventually I rigged up the extending wheel brace with the appropriate end bit, got the car up on a Bradbury with the back wheels near the back edge, and clouted the extension with a hammer (motto of REME, if it don't work hit it with a hammer if it still don't work hit it with a bigger hammer) until the thread finally moved.

Catch, of course, was it did not actually need removed (Sierra Diff), fluid level was fine.

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Replying to DJKL:
By SteveHa
06th Apr 2021 13:16

I just bought a new desk chair (let's face it, with WFH becoming the new norm, we need decent support and comfort) and just turning the tension screw, especially after 30 minutes putting the damned thing together, needed a Herculian effort.

But at least, now I have decent lumbar support and no longer lilt to the right.

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Replying to SteveHa:
paddle steamer
By DJKL
06th Apr 2021 13:49

So, the Timewarp is no longer an option.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mpmUesUUhZA

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By RaxJ
06th Apr 2021 12:16

You need to stop moaning. That's how accountancy and finance is.

Just deal with it.

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Replying to RaxJ:
Stepurhan
By stepurhan
06th Apr 2021 12:25

Seriously? HMRC being completely incompetent is just the way it is?

Do you think that is acceptable? Do you not think that should change and that pressure should be brought on government to do that? What other things should we "just deal with" instead of highlighting issues.

That said, this seems to be your answer to most things. Have you considered that maybe you are the one that should be reconsidering a career that you appear to hate so much? If not, are you able to offer any constructive advice?

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Replying to stepurhan:
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By adam.arca
06th Apr 2021 12:34

I think you should assume that RaxJ is one of the younger breed of accountant who had no experience of a world where things got done, albeit sometimes slowly, because humans were involved rather than computers, which was also the same world where the Inland Revenue, as was, were halfway competent and assigned staff to portfolios of taxpayers, said staff therefore having some pride in their work and no knowledge of or use for the HMRC black hole.

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Replying to adam.arca:
Stepurhan
By stepurhan
06th Apr 2021 13:34

Also local offices where you could actually speak to a person to resolve issues.

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Replying to stepurhan:
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By DaveyJonesLocker
06th Apr 2021 13:47

Ah, the days I ran the local tax office to get a repayment released, knew all the staff there (and which one to hang up on as she said hello because she was the most unhelpful one!)

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Replying to DaveyJonesLocker:
By SteveHa
06th Apr 2021 13:50

Ahh, I remember being in the local tax office answering the phone to accountants who seemed to have nothing better to do than phone me. ;)

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By DaveyJonesLocker
06th Apr 2021 20:40

If you processed repayments quicker we wouldn't have needed to ring ;-)

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Replying to DaveyJonesLocker:
By SteveHa
07th Apr 2021 09:21

Ahh, back in my Revenue days we did. In fact, having post more than 14 days old was punishable by birching.

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Replying to SteveHa:
By tonyaustin
09th Apr 2021 11:39

I was always told that after 13 days unanswered post got put in the wpb (didn't have shredders in those days)

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Replying to RaxJ:
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By memyself-eye
06th Apr 2021 13:34

Wot - an accountant put the nut on?

Well I never!

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Jane
By Jane Evans
06th Apr 2021 12:24

Please may I ask how you find out this information. Do you click into every client on your HMRC agent list, or is there a quicker way?

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Replying to Jane Evans:
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By Paul Crowley
06th Apr 2021 13:03

Do not know about others, but I know who should NOT get a return and check them quite quickly
Those clients often complain later that HMRC 'sent nothing'
Last year and this year all mine will get an email in April

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Replying to Paul Crowley:
Jane
By Jane Evans
06th Apr 2021 13:45

Thank you. I have checked my clients whom I requested should be removed from SA and they have been removed. The one year only CT reporting have however been requested to file this year.

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By Paul Crowley
06th Apr 2021 12:58

I just submit a blank return
Which is taking the exact identical degree of care and consideration that HMRC take
Unless it appears to me that a refund may be due.
Did several that way last year

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Replying to Paul Crowley:
Hitch photo
By Kevin Kavanagh
06th Apr 2021 13:14

I like that approach!

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Replying to Paul Crowley:
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By New To Accountancy
06th Apr 2021 15:02

I LOVE that approach. I'll be doing that.

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A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
06th Apr 2021 15:12

Is the axle in the car? Do you have a small trolley jack? If so position your socket with a bar around 2ft long so there is enough vertical space, then put the arm of the jack under the end of the bar. Gently jack up the bar and with luck the weight of the car will move the nut. You won't have much space though, and be careful not to dent a sill or the underbody if the bar slips.
Disclaimer: try this at your own risk as neither of our PIs will cover it.

[Edit: sorry this was meant to be a reply to memyself-eye]

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Replying to Arthur Putey:
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By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
06th Apr 2021 15:59

I've used a reversal of that whereby, with the car jacked up, I extend the socket wrench arm (with a hollow pipe) so that the free end of the extension pipe is touching the floor; then lower the car. Makes use of gravity, and avoids the bar slipping.

Edit: Sorry, Tornado, but shifting MME's tough nut is a far more interesting topic.

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Replying to I'msorryIhaven'taclue:
Tornado
By Tornado
06th Apr 2021 16:35

'Edit: Sorry, Tornado, but shifting MME's tough nut is a far more interesting topic.'

I agree with you. I am so fed up with HMRC making life difficult, that a stuck nut on an MGB is positively exciting in comparison. Reminds me of the days when self-servicing of cars was essential for younger folk and when you needed a new gear box for your 100E, you just had to do it yourself and hope the 'reconditioned' box kept working for more than 500 miles.

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Replying to Tornado:
paddle steamer
By DJKL
06th Apr 2021 17:09

Those were the days, age 18 at evening car maintenance classes at Boroughmuir High School in Edinburgh, we had a Morris Minor to work on, the engine was so small and the bay so large that one could virtually get an arm into the bay with elbow to fingers at right angles to the block.

The reason I bought my Scimitar is it is a last generation car pre engine management systems (1987) , it has a galvanised chassis so rust is limited and the body is fibreglass which even I can repair (however imperfectly) by building layers and using sandpaper.

Also no turbos, superchargers, the height of enhancement is getting the head rebored, replacing the camshaft and enhancing the gas flow combined with pepping up the carb. (I have, lying on a shelf, a stage one head and twin weber DCNF carbs on a CVH manifold though possibly have waited too long, the attraction of extra bhp now waning as my years advance)

Having said the above if a larger garage permitted I would not be averse to the Nisssan 1800 turbo version , they can really be modded.

http://www.ss1turbo.co.uk/hot_hatch_hunting.htm

If gearboxes are an issue you must be buying the wrong cars, the Ford Sierra gearbox in the Scimitar seems near bullet proof. ( I am yet to break one)

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Replying to DJKL:
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By paulwakefield1
06th Apr 2021 18:20

Have to say I went off the Scimitar after seeing 3 going up in flames in a 2 year period!

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Replying to paulwakefield1:
paddle steamer
By DJKL
06th Apr 2021 22:37

They are sponsored by Zippo.

Certainly the fuel lines degrade with age and have a tendency to leak in the latter stages, then give up totally, my one sprung outside my house which brought the fire brigade out, I at least got brownie points for loading the wheelbarrow with earth from the garden and dumping it on the spill. I do now have replacement lines just never seem to get the energy to fit them so it has been sitting (tank drained) for a fair few years now, maybe 2021 is the year I put it back together.

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Replying to I'msorryIhaven'taclue:
A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
06th Apr 2021 16:58

Yes that can work, although in this case if the rear of the car is jacked up, even just one wheel, the diff will casue the wheel to rotate rather than the nut (or worse, if the car has an LSD, but I don't think that's likely on an MGB?).

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Replying to Arthur Putey:
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By memyself-eye
06th Apr 2021 16:57

Tried that - the jack lifts the car off the ramps even with a pry bar preventing the [***] (in which the nut sits) from rotating - so all the force of the jack should be applied only to the nut and not the car.
However, today a friend has lent me a Ryobi impact wrench - which, if Youtube is to be believed can exert 400psi plus.
Too cold to try it today but will give it a go soon...
Can then fit new oil seal and stop one (of many) leaks!

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Replying to memyself-eye:
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By memyself-eye
06th Apr 2021 16:59

for some reason the word flan-ge (an engineering term) has been bleeped out!

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Replying to memyself-eye:
A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
06th Apr 2021 17:09

It is very much a woody word

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Replying to memyself-eye:
A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
06th Apr 2021 17:09

and don't mention grease nipples

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Replying to Arthur Putey:
A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
06th Apr 2021 17:10

or trunnions

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Replying to Arthur Putey:
Tornado
By Tornado
06th Apr 2021 17:46

or M & F sockets !

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Replying to memyself-eye:
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By Paul Crowley
06th Apr 2021 23:22

USA URBAN SLANG
Girl's part
Or woman but not in a polite way

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Replying to memyself-eye:
A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
06th Apr 2021 17:08

Mind your wrists if using an air/impact wrench! And be prepared for some fun getting the new nut torqued back to 135lb without the [****] rotating!!! Do you have to worry about preload or does a crush washer take care of that?

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Replying to Arthur Putey:
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By memyself-eye
07th Apr 2021 16:12

The nut is off!
The impact wrench worked - I marked the nut and end of the diff input shaft with Tipp-ex so it goes back at the same torque setting.
See - office stuff DOES have a role in mechanics!

Not that accountants approve of tipp-ex of course.....

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Replying to Arthur Putey:
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By memyself-eye
07th Apr 2021 16:09

Not air driven - it has a mains free battery- quite compact!

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Replying to memyself-eye:
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By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
06th Apr 2021 17:57

Sounds ideal - let's hope your pry bar holds out at 400 psi!

If so, and after you've burnt out the motor on the impact wrench you can always try lowering the car onto a socket with extended wrench to crack this nut- the weight of the car descending onto the wrench extension has done the trick for me before now.

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By Tax Dragon
07th Apr 2021 06:45

If you're lying on your back then isn't anti-clockwise the other way?

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
07th Apr 2021 13:05

Depends whether you're lying facing the front or the back of the car :)

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By memyself-eye
07th Apr 2021 16:07

No -facing the diff from the prop shaft end (even on my back) it is still anti clockwise.

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By memyself-eye
08th Apr 2021 12:58

just to end - it's done!

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Replying to memyself-eye:
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By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
08th Apr 2021 13:12

Good for you!

Your tribulation reminded me of how I once spent the entire first week of my summer holiday leave lying under my wife's 1971 MGB GT installing a reconditioned gearbox. The Haynes manual said it couldn't be done without whipping out the beast of an engine, but with a number of jacks and some twisting and turning I managed to replace it from underneath, although it took forever.

The idea was to motor down to Cornwall in it for the second week's hols, but to our horror we found the recon gearbox wouldn't engage reverse gear! Seems the recon job was all gunk and blasting, evidently with no parts replaced. Fortunately we lived in a crescent at the time, so were able to sell the car with no apparent defect.

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Replying to I'msorryIhaven'taclue:
paddle steamer
By DJKL
09th Apr 2021 10:38

"Would you buy a used car from this man ?"

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By Mr J Andrews
09th Apr 2021 09:48

I've devised a standard letter to HMRC for such incompetence.
It's addressed to The Customer Services Complaints Manager and headed FORMAL COMPLAINT
It spells out the incompetency and accuses HMRC of a dereliction of duty and care under the expected provisions of Section 1 TMA 1970.
It tells HMRC what they should do next.
It asks for a written apology to client and copy to me.
It asks for a measure of compensation to be considered [ usually a suggested token £50 ] for the additional administration and inconvenience.
It spells out that I expect a better service going forward and require written confirmation to this effect.
Seems to work but I do feel sorry for the remaining front line HMRC staff whilst their incompetent superiors carry on regardless.

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David Ross
By davidross
09th Apr 2021 10:24

I posted a similar complaint at this link a few days ago;

https://www.accountingweb.co.uk/any-answers/problems-cancelling-self-ass...

I was finding that clients who had been 'taken out' for 2020 were getting late filing penalties, so this latest instance is not a surprise and I will be carefully examining the HMRC portal for 2021 forms

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