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image of boiler flame | accountingweb | HMRC backtracks over boiler advice
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HMRC in hot water over inaccurate boiler advice

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After advice concerning boiler upgrades ignited confusion, HMRC is contacting taxpayers to right its wrong.

25th Mar 2024
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HMRC is contacting taxpayers over the “misleading advice” it issued last year on boiler upgrades.

In 2023, the department stated that such improvements didn’t constitute a repair but it is now set to issue a correction letter after the original prompted checks of the property pages of the self assessment (SA) return for the tax year ended 5 April 2022.

HMRC had initially told customers that expenditure incurred on “upgrading a central heating boiler from an older, less efficient model” is an example of an expense that tax relief can’t be claimed for.

However, the department has now acknowledged that it got it wrong.

Blowing hot and cold

“This isn’t accurate, and we’re sorry for the mistake,” it said. “You may make an upgrade like this due to an advance in technology and the new item does broadly the same job as the old one.

“If so, we’d generally accept this as an allowable repair.”

If, it added, after reading the original letter the individual amended their SA return regarding a boiler expense, it has advised to “please check it again”.

“If you think you’re entitled to claim more tax relief on property expenses for a boiler expense, please email us at [email protected].”

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Replies (6)

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By JCresswellTax
25th Mar 2024 13:59

Are HMRC capable of sending out a memo and not backtracking? It seems the answer to that is no!

Thanks (6)
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By Tom+Cross
25th Mar 2024 14:08

Thank goodness that they (HMRC) don't fit the darn things.

Is there anything else, in the compendium of HMRC, which they might have to put right?

This working from home malarkey clearly isn't working.

Thanks (5)
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By FactChecker
25th Mar 2024 20:13

Thought it was about time for me to submit an entry to the Naïve Awards:

HMRC are happy to be quoted saying:
“If you think you’re entitled to claim more tax relief on property expenses for a boiler expense, please email us at [email protected]
... but only because most affected people won't read that 'suggestion'.

Why don't HMRC send an email to every taxpayer who submitted a SATR for the relevant years ... providing them with a simple but clear A4 page's worth of explanation and asking the taxpayer if they now feel they should re-consider?

Thanks (3)
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By Rebecca Cave
26th Mar 2024 11:16

Don't HMRC even read thier own manuals any more?
The Business Income Manual has a section specifically on upgrades to equipment or buildings due to changes in technology: BIM 46925:https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/business-income-manual/bim46925
The Property Income Manaul advice at PIM 2025 points directly to those paras in BIM.

This article would have benefited from a little technical background.

Thanks (7)
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By Mr J Andrews
27th Mar 2024 12:00

......''Got it wrong''.....''Sorry for the mistake''.........sounds a hell of a lot more than ........'' Offering misleading advice''. But this is what to expect from the HMRC propaganda machine.
How soon, I wonder, will truth be out about the deliberate deceit that life would be made easier for the general taxpaying public following George Osborn's wet dream for a digital system for the plebians.
Misled Them Dreadfully.

Thanks (2)
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By AndyJR81
04th Apr 2024 15:54

"Yours sincerely

Wealthy Mid-sized Compliance Officer"

Well now he's just bragging.....

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