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MTD Internal Server Error

MTD

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Any idea's on how to resolve this? I assume the MTD system is creeking under the strain on submission today which maybe the cause. Nothing to do with the sign up process as we submit monthly returns for the client and have submitted under MTD for the last two months without any problems. Nobody has the time to sit on hold for hours waiting for them to pick up your call so what can you d.o

 

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Easy MTD VAT
By EasyMTDVAT
31st Jul 2019 13:13

MTD software developers received the following from HMRC last week (26/07/19). Maybe the issue hasn't been resolved or another has reared its ugly head (which we are yet to be informed about).

"Internal server error
We are aware that today some customers have been experiencing an issue with submitting their MTD VAT returns. Customers impacted received an ‘Internal server error’ message. This issue only impacted those customers with a numeric period key. We have been working to resolve this and a fix has now been applied. We are very sorry for any inconvenience this caused."

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By johnhemming
31st Jul 2019 13:23

We had one of these on Friday which was resubmitted successfully yesterday.

You probably have a numeric period key. You can ask another MTD supplier to have a look at this if you need to, but it probably requires escalation within HMRC.

I could only tell you more by running a diagnostic test (as I presume could Mr Easy above). If you would like a bit of help email me at [email protected]. I only have one outstanding live problem at the moment (and that is stuck with HMRC) so I can take on additional problems.

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PJ
By paulgrca.net
31st Jul 2019 13:53

OK thanks guys.
What is a numeric period key?
Software is VT transactions plus - submitted other VAT returns today using the same software without any problems - pointless trying to ring HMRC for a solution today as I will be on hold for hours but I guess I may have to try early tomorrow and keep my fingers crossed. Typical of HMRC the MTD service availability page says there are no issues at the moment - what's the point of the page if they do not use it hopeless!

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By vtsoftware
31st Jul 2019 14:50

I think it most likely that HMRC's systems are busy, given that we are approaching the deadline of 7 August for submitting June returns. The same issue arose this time last month.

I would try again early tomorrow.

The characteristic of Friday's fault, which has been fixed by HMRC, was that the error arose when attempting to submit a return but not when choosing 'Display HMRC's List Of Your VAT Returns'.

I fail to see what 'diagnostics' another vendor can carry out, other than to generate an identical error message.

For the information of other members, when VT receives HMRC's INTERNAL_SERVER_ERROR message, the user is directed to http://www.vtsoftware.co.uk/mtd/currentissues.htm

Philip Hodgson
VT Software

Edit: I have just spoken to my support staff and INTERNAL_SERVER_ERROR is a very common error message today.

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Replying to vtsoftware:
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By johnhemming
31st Jul 2019 15:18

vtsoftware wrote:

I fail to see what 'diagnostics' another vendor can carry out, other than to generate an identical error message.


The questions that can be answered by diagnostics are:
a) Whether or not it is a numeric period key.
b) Whether or no the data is recorded on HMRC's systems even though they have responded with a 500 error.
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Replying to johnhemming:
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By vtsoftware
31st Jul 2019 15:46

The OP has made it clear that he gets the same message when he attempts to access the obligations API. No period keys are involved at this stage and no VAT data has been sent.

HMRC are also saying that the fault you are trying to identify was fixed on Friday. Sorry to be direct, but I think you would be wasting the OP's time.

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Replying to vtsoftware:
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By johnhemming
31st Jul 2019 15:59

INTERNAL_SERVER_ERROR and error 500 are one and the same thing.

The 5xx series of errors means that something has gone wrong in the software at HMRC's end.

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Replying to johnhemming:
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By vtsoftware
31st Jul 2019 16:16

Indeed. We make that clear (in plain language) on the page our users are directed to when they get that error, http://www.vtsoftware.co.uk/mtd/currentissues.htm

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By johnhemming
31st Jul 2019 16:23

In any event I am going to leave my office in the next 20 mins to get my son from holiday camp so if anyone has any outstanding problems for today they would like free assistance with they only have 15 minutes within which to ask for help. (It will take 5 mins to resolve any issues).

I simply make the point that the INTERNAL_SERVER_ERROR of today is the same error code as HMRC claimed to have fixed on Friday.

My guess is that they have different internal systems for numeric period keys which is why all the problems (missing obligations, internal server errors) seem to happen in numeric period keys.

I think these are probably older VAT accounts.

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Replying to johnhemming:
PJ
By paulgrca.net
31st Jul 2019 16:30

Thanks but no thanks this is a current return for June 2019 so you are incorrect on that point.

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By johnhemming
31st Jul 2019 16:44

I was meaning "older" in the sense of accounts that were set up decades ago.

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PJ
By paulgrca.net
31st Jul 2019 16:52

Wrong again I am afraid business has been trading for about 18 months.

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By johnhemming
31st Jul 2019 17:50

Then it probably isn't a numeric period key.

I should explain a little more. Each period has a period key. Some period keys are just numbers (eg 0619) other period keys are alpha numeric (eg 19C2).

HMRC have a lot more problems with the systems for those accounts that have numeric period keys than those which are alphanumeric.

My guess is that at some stage in the past they changed computer system and accounts set up prior to that point had numeric period keys and those that are more recent had alphanumeric period keys.

It appears that they are still processed separately today in some way.

Hence it does matter if there is a numeric period key or not.

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PJ
By paulgrca.net
31st Jul 2019 14:50

Well done VT for picking up my original question and responding.
Well clearly whatever the issue is it has not been fixed by HMRC or do we just accept that some submissions will not work when it's busy?
I will try again tomorrow

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Replying to paulgrca.net:
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By vtsoftware
31st Jul 2019 14:55

It is a bit odd that some submissions are working but not others, or maybe just unlucky timing?

Have you tried accessing HMRC's list of the returns?

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Replying to vtsoftware:
PJ
By paulgrca.net
31st Jul 2019 15:09

Yes I have..... can not display a list of the returns just get the same error message.

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By vtsoftware
31st Jul 2019 15:18

I think that is good news. Unless a completely new fault has arisen I think it just means HMRC's computers are overwhelmed at the moment. You can ignore all the stuff about period keys.

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By johnhemming
31st Jul 2019 15:21

On this point we will have to disagree. I have just run a test on my personal vat number and the apis are working perfectly well. However, that is not a numeric period key.

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By Jackie in Wiltshire
31st Jul 2019 16:26

What the heck is a "numeric period key"?

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By vtsoftware
31st Jul 2019 17:33

I don't think anyone other than a developer needs to know, but there is an explanation in the second to last point at http://www.vtsoftware.co.uk/mtd/behindthescenes.htm

Philip Hodgson
VT Software

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PJ
By paulgrca.net
01st Aug 2019 08:19

Update
Rang HMRC late yesterday and actually spoke to someone however could not get past the security questions despite answering all the questions and a 64-8 being in place very odd and frustrating but not untypical!
Changed nothing but tried to submit again this morning and it worked.

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By vtsoftware
01st Aug 2019 09:22

I'm glad you have been able to submit. Thanks for letting us know.

We had a few other users yesterday with the same problem. This issue also arose on the last day of June and resolved itself by the next day.

It would appear that a certain small subset of businesses periodically have this problem and so far it has always resolved by the next day.

Philip Hodgson
VT Software

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