How to change phone number on client VAT MTD Acct

How to change phone number on client VAT MTD Acct

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Small practice owner here having a nightmare with HMRC (nothing new!)

I have a new client that has switched from a previous accountant. The previous accountant had set up my client's VAT MTD account and used a mobile number, which has now expired!

We have the login details but cannot proceed past the code to phone issue, I am not authorised to act on my client's behalf as we need to login to grant authorisation. Client was on hold for 2 hours to HMRC trying to get through, hung up. This makes me look bad even though not my fault!

Anyway got any advice.. When will HMRC sort their [***] out????

Replies (3)

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By Jason Croke
11th Apr 2024 19:48

Client wasn't on hold to HMRC for 2 hours because the system automatically cuts you off after 60 minutes. Client hyperbole may be in play here.

Even with my daily frustrations of contacting HMRC, my average wait is about 40 minutes per call, so not brilliant, but I do get through eventually every time.

There is no way for this to be fixed except your client has to call HMRC, confirm their identity by passing the security questions and then asking for the mobile number to be set to their own.

Even if you had authority or a 64-8, HMRC will not allow an agent to reset the account, it has to be the taxpayer, so you are not doing your client a disservice. I've overseas clients who don't speak English, still I can't do this, HMRC offer a translation service for when the client calls!

The only way you could do this yourself would be to pretend to be the client, answering the security questions (such as date of VAT registration, postcode, the value of Box 5 on the last return, etc) and then you can reset the account...but then you'd be impersonating your client and you need to weigh up honesty vs getting the job done quickly, its a slippery slope if you start pretending to be the client, more so if you are just starting out.

Client should call the VAT Online Helpline which is for logging in/password issues, the number is 0300 200 3701. If they've been calling the general VAT helpline then they would not have been able to assist had your client got through anyway. The Online helpline usually has a shorter wait time of about 20 minutes as it only deals with logging in/technical IT issues.

Appreciate the feeling of helplessness, welcome to my world, just explain to client that this is HMRC protocols and client will have to make the call.

HMRC treat VAT logins very seriously, think of it like a bank account, banks don't make it easy for you to reset passwords or logins without many security checks (although they are quicker to answer the phone), and VAT accounts are like bank accounts, you can do all sorts of fraudulent damage if anyone has access to them.

Thanks (3)
Replying to Jason Croke:
By Paul Crowley
11th Apr 2024 21:10

I am with you on the impersonation thing.
The client exaggerated. But my client who claimed she spent 2 hours talking to DWP?

Thanks (1)
By Duggimon
12th Apr 2024 09:49

I would highly recommend that when your client eventually does get through (which doesn't take two hours) and gets the 2FA reset, they add more than one method to verify should there be any issues in future.

Thanks (1)