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Problem filing Self Assessment online with HMRC Software

Problem filing Self Assessment online with HMRC...

Here is the text of a letter I have sent to the Tax Office, which will be self-explanatory


Back in the middle of November 2008 I filed my Self Assessment Return online using the HMRC software. It appeared to transmit but since then has locked up with the error messages as attached. No clicking on any of the links will allow me to go anywhere with it.

I have tried filing using commercial software but the message just comes back that a Return has been logged in already, and of course we are now past the deadline for paper Returns.

Phone calls to the Online Services Help desk are of course just to a Call Centre who have more than once said the problem has been “escalated” but I have heard nothing further. I have been told that there is some system-wide blockage that someone is going to fix, but after some two months and the 31 January deadline hurtling towards us I have no faith in that.

May I suggest a possible solution? If a similar problem occurs with a Corporation Tax Return I can phone the local Tax Office where the person ‘un-sets’ the Return and in a day or so I can re-file Online. Can you do the same at local level for Self Assessment?

It is no good me phoning the 0845 number because that is just a Call Centre - the difference with Corporation Tax being that you actually get to speak to someone who can do something !

I am attaching an identical letter for Mr XXXXX, a client for whom exactly the same problem has occurred.


HMRC: Welcome back - What would you like to do today?

XXXXXXXX 's tax return: 2007-08 SUBMITTED
Online Services
This section explains what you can do using the File a return service.
View your calculation for your latest submitted return
View/print/store your return onto your local drive
Pay any outstanding tax you owe using How to pay
Work with your current and previous returns in Tax return options

Welcome back
What would you like to do today?
ERROR: We cannot verify that your return was successfully submitted to HM Revenue & Customs. Please click 'Next' so that we can do this
now and verify your return was submitted.

HMRC: Submit your return - System busy 06/01/2009 10:19

file/0708/ind/XXXXXXXXXX/return/submit/submitting Page 1 of 1

Your tax return is 95% complete
Online Services
We are not able to confirm that your return has been successfully received

If you are not able to wait for a response, you can log out and return to the File a return service later, in order to confirm that HM Revenue &
Customs has received your return.

Your return is saved automatically.

If you need help:
If this problem persists, please contact the Online Services Helpdesk …

David Ross


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By Anonymous
16th Jan 2009 11:19

Solution found at last

As per my previous post I phoned the local tax office and they were unable to help, stating that it was an IT issue and was something that they did not deal with. They only dealt with the data after it appeared on the system.

Since then I have purchased 3rd party software, I submitted a return using this and hey presto a repayment has been made within 2days of submitting the return.

Hasten to say I will never be using HMRC software again!!


Thanks (0)
06th Jan 2009 16:24

Having Same Problem Myself
I am experiencing the same problem myself. Have phoned the IT Support Desk via the support number given ( as an agent ) 0845 6055 999 and told that it is in a queue to be looked at. There are lots of people with the same error. I have also been given a case reference no which will be used to prove that the return was submited in time.

Problem is that my client has a young family ( twins just born) and is due a large rebate circa £1000. To say he is pulling his hair out is an understatement. The submission errored on the 8th December and I have made numerous calls to the IT Helpdesk only to be given the stock answer. When you look at the cleints file it says that the submission has been made on the 8th December 2008 but not received by HMRC just to answer the other posters query.

My next step will be to phone the local tax office and try and expediate a solution to the problem, unless someone else can suggest a better solution. Guessing there will be lots of disattisfied people when the online submissions are made this month and several error out.


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By Anonymous
06th Jan 2009 11:48

Has it been received and processed?
Its not clear from what you say. When you log into your account (as self or as agent) does it show anything relevant to 2007/08? Have you spoken to your own HMRC office or the office for the client via agent help line. You are right about the general helpline, they are usually no more than message takers. By the way HMRC will tell you they have at least 8 weeks to respond to your complaint.

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