Problems with HMRC over my Company Paye account (long post sorry)

edited 9 December 2009 at 5:52PM in Cutting Tax
15 replies 3.9K views
angelavdavisangelavdavis Forumite
4.7K Posts
Mortgage-free Glee!
edited 9 December 2009 at 5:52PM in Cutting Tax
Hi all,

I am at a loss what to do about a situation I have with HMRC and need to resolve this so I can complete the accounts for my small company.

I closed down my company at the end of March this year. At that time, I completed forms to deregister the company for VAT, PAYE, Corporation Tax and issued a P45 for myself (only employee). My VAT account was up to date as the company hadn't earned any income since December 08.
I completed an online PAYE end of year submission online - thereby attracting a £75 bonus from HMRC for a small company at this time also. In early April, I processed the records with Companies House as my company renewal was due end April, and I needed to avoid paying for my registration for a further year (knowing that the Companies house process take 4 months to close the company).

I chased up HMRC PAYE office in April, to be told that I needed to phone the Employers Helpline. I spoke with them with regard to the £75 refund, as I was paying for a business bank account to remain open whilst waiting the refund. At this time, they said that I needed to wait until May as I hadn't allowed sufficient time for them to process.

I phoned the Employers Helpline in May, and was told to phone another number, which I duly did. I was then told to phone yet another number as this other department were dealing with my account. I did this and mentioned I was paying for a bank account now with my JSA so could someone process single PAYE account asap. I was told that I would be receiving the £75 by cheque in due course.

I phoned in June, to be told that they could not view my records due to a new system being implemented and to phone back in July. I phoned in July, to be told that the department I needed to speak to no longer took calls from the public, but that I should call back in 2 weeks as it was clear they were still working on my account.

I phoned 2 weeks later, to be told that they were processing my PAYE account and thought my company may have overpaid on PAYE for two years and that someone would be coming back to me. Nobody contacted me. I chased - nobody came back to me.

I then phoned the Employee Helpline again end July. I spoke with (at last) someone who seemed to know what they were doing, I explained about the cost of the bank account, etc. She confirmed that it appeared I was owed £8k due to overpayment of PAYE (no idea why) as well as the £75 which was being held in a suspense account. Worringly at this stage, she said there was nothing in my account to say that the company was being closed and that the £75 was being held to discount against future PAYE payments!

She also explained that I needed to fax the East Kilbride office (who don't take calls), detailing all my calls, HMRCs responses, confirming the company closure back in April, etc etc. Was told they had 72 hours to respond. I duly did this immediately that day. They didn't come back so I left another message.

Two days later (6th August) I got a phone call from someone at East Kilbride who said that I needed to phone yet another number for the local Tax office who were "responsible for releasing funds". I tried to phone this number all day, but it was engaged for four days. Eventually, I got through to someone, it really sounded like he was the only one in the office. He said "I don't know why you have been put through to me - this is nothing to do with us - you need to phone East Kilbride office again and tell them its nothing to do with me". I explained that I could not phone East Kilbride as they don't take phone calls, "Oh" he said "you will have to send another fax then - sorry"!

I phoned back the Employers Helpline straightaway and asked for the complaints procedure.

So, sick of being pushed from pillar to post and being fed excuses, I immediately faxed the department I could no longer speak to again, this time with the words "complaint".

I was called back 5 days later, by someone who said I needed to provide them with all the information relating to my payments for the PAYE account. In addition, they said that even if I do this, I can no longer have either the £75 refund or, even if owed it, the £8k as they have been notified on the 14th of August that my company is no longer trading!

Therefore, I have no option now than to either engage an accountant to claim on my behalf (I do my own accounts) or register with Bona Vacantia for £170 and claim back the money that way!

Although admitting I had been badly treated, and that someone should have treated my complaint seriously on 4th August when I initially wrote to them, I was told I had no other choice!:confused: as their delays had caused these issues to drag on beyond the 4 month companies house processing time!

I have been looking on the HMRC web site and googling trying to find some way of complaining or appealing. I can't find any solution.

I haven't got £170 as I haven't earned money since December last year, I certainly can't afford to engage an accountant at this stage either. Should I write to my MP? I just don't know what to do. Time is creeping on, I need to complete my Corporate Tax return (this refund would count against Corp Tax) and I am at a complete loss what to do.

So sorry for the long post, but desperately need some advice.
:D Thanks to MSE, I am mortgage free!:D
«1

Replies

  • MikeyorksMikeyorks Forumite
    10.4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    Like most UK organisations, these days, they're pretty inept when things go wrong ..... and sinking rapidly.

    Get the name of the Director for the area who dealt with the original PAYE ..... and send a formal complaint (you have more than the gist of it in this post!). He / she will trade it off to their local complaints team - but you should get a response and an offer of some redress for the hassle and out of pocket costs incurred. Importantly you should get some illumination of the £8k issue.

    If the response is inadequate - go straight to the Adjudicator who really is impartial.

    Lengthy process I'm afraid .... but HMRC offer no practical shortcuts in their present and increasing turmoil :-

    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/dealingwith/complain.htm
    If you want to test the depth of the water .........don't use both feet !
  • Can you clarify a couple of points.

    Has the company actually been removed from the register at Companies House?

    If it has, then any assets would belong to the Crown. This is certainly what the last chap meant when he said the money could not be repaid. I understand an application can be made to the Treasury Solicitor or some such person but am not familiar with the process.

    The other point is what exactly did you do with Companies House in April? I'm not sure but I don't think the new Companies Act form for dissolution came into effect until October. Did you complete form 652a? This would have confirmed that the company had not traded for three months.

    If that form was completed had you obtained any clearance from HMRC? I understood they used to always object to the striking off if the corporation tax position was not settled.

    Sorry for the questions. I think you have been badly treated but the way forward will depend on the exact position now.
    If it’s not important to you, don’t consume it
  • DCoddDCodd Forumite
    8.2K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭
    HMRC has complaint Managers and procedures that you can implement.

    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/factsheets/complaints-factsheet.pdf

    As fopr your Corp Tax, I would assume that you will have to complete it and return as is to avoid a fine, but Hopefully someone like fengirl will advise you better on this.
    Always get a Qualified opinion - My qualifications are that I am OLD and GRUMPY:p:p
  • edited 9 December 2009 at 6:01PM
    angelavdavisangelavdavis Forumite
    4.7K Posts
    Mortgage-free Glee!
    edited 9 December 2009 at 6:01PM
    Thanks for this Mike.

    I can't get the name of anyone except the lady dealing with my complaint in East Gilbride - and only because she now wants me to provide two years worth of information relating to PAYE payments!

    I have phoned the Employer Helpline requesting this information, but have been told to just send to East Gilbride and mark my correspondence COMPLAINT and the relevant officer will be contact me within 72 hours.
    :D Thanks to MSE, I am mortgage free!:D
  • Can you clarify a couple of points.

    Has the company actually been removed from the register at Companies House?
    Yes, I got confirmation a couple of days after speaking with HMRC.
    If it has, then any assets would belong to the Crown. This is certainly what the last chap meant when he said the money could not be repaid. I understand an application can be made to the Treasury Solicitor or some such person but am not familiar with the process.

    Yes, pay £170 for the privilege of registering.
    The other point is what exactly did you do with Companies House in April? I'm not sure but I don't think the new Companies Act form for dissolution came into effect until October. Did you complete form 652a? This would have confirmed that the company had not traded for three months.

    Yes this form was completed.
    If that form was completed had you obtained any clearance from HMRC? I understood they used to always object to the striking off if the corporation tax position was not settled.

    I didn't owe any corp tax as we had no profits that I was aware of (as I wasn't aware that I might get a refund from HMRC for £8k at the time)
    Sorry for the questions. I think you have been badly treated but the way forward will depend on the exact position now.
    No worries - understand. Thanks
    :D Thanks to MSE, I am mortgage free!:D
  • edited 9 December 2009 at 6:20PM
    angelavdavisangelavdavis Forumite
    4.7K Posts
    Mortgage-free Glee!
    edited 9 December 2009 at 6:20PM
    DCodd wrote: »
    HMRC has complaint Managers and procedures that you can implement.

    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/factsheets/complaints-factsheet.pdf

    As fopr your Corp Tax, I would assume that you will have to complete it and return as is to avoid a fine, but Hopefully someone like fengirl will advise you better on this.

    Hi, I have followed this procedure - they simply won't acknowledge that they have delayed me to this degree at all and simply caused this situation where they have taken in excess of five months to process a single employee PAYE account and given me the impression they were working on this account when they did not even look at it until the second complaint letter was sent. Their take on it is that they agree that I am owed money but now my company is ceased, I will have to get a refund by paying out more money.

    So, looks like adjudicator via my MP is the next step. I am stuck here to be honest, because, despite my requests in both my faxes for a response in writing - I haven't received any correspondence at all from HMRC and the adjudicator requests this information.

    Ref Corp Tax, see my previous response to Elaine, I don't owe any Corp tax because we didn't have a profit. So any return would be zero. However, the only money I would owe Corp tax on would be any refund I get from HMRC which effectively becomes profit. I can't declare this as profit it is not held by my company - it was paid for PAYE in good faith based on calculations made by the HMRC software.

    However, I have tried explaining this to HMRC when I was first told that I might have a refund back in July to emphasise the urgency - but they don't seem to understand this! In fact, when I explained this again to the Complaints adviser in August, she said that this delay wouldn't hold up my ability to process the corp tax. No amount of explaining could make her see the light!
    :D Thanks to MSE, I am mortgage free!:D
  • MikeyorksMikeyorks Forumite
    10.4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    I can't get the name of anyone except the lady dealing with my complaint in East Gilbride -

    Your last P2 (Coding Notice) in respect of your Company should identify the relevant office. And the Director / Senior Officer should be shown on there (possibly as a 'signature' ..... together with the correct postal adddress.
    If you want to test the depth of the water .........don't use both feet !
  • Will take a look, thanks Mike.
    :D Thanks to MSE, I am mortgage free!:D
  • edited 10 December 2009 at 9:36AM
    harryhoundharryhound Forumite
    2.7K Posts
    ✭✭✭✭
    edited 10 December 2009 at 9:36AM

    I can't get the name of anyone except the lady dealing with my complaint in East Gilbride - and only because she now wants me to provide two years worth of information relating to PAYE payments!

    I have phoned the Employer Helpline requesting this information, but have been told to just send to East Gilbride and mark my correspondence COMPLAINT and the relevant officer will be contact me within 72 hours.

    Would that be East Kilbride near Glasgow ?
    I'm still waiting for a repayment claim from last September - I know they have had it because I got a letter asking for clarification of a point (to which I replied promptly).
    Are they totally overloaded. I don't want to rattle the bars of the cage but I don't want 08/09 to still be outstanding past the end of January. The computer is getting stroppy about my non payment of last July's payment on account when in fact they owe me money. Have I created a Mexican stand off?

    Ah look what Google has found:

    Top of the Backlog Charts let us hear it for East Kilbride:T:T:T:T:T:T:mad:
    (In fairness, these figures are from last July following implementation of the new computerised centralisation of National Insurance and PAYE, but they do show a significant jump in E.Kilbride's clerical backlog; perhaps my return arrived just in time to hit the peak of the chaos and all those hard working Scots are now on top of the pile and enjoying their overtime payments?)

    Belfast 20,632 26,003 25,632

    Bradford 103,433 109,145 113,198

    East Kilbride 114,411 128,067 129,602

    Edinburgh 68,047 70,640 61,876

    Manchester 119,685 112,129 120,580

    Stockton 26,495 25,936 25,559

    Washington 87,142 95,538 98,235

    North Total 539,845 567,458 574,682
    =================================================================================
    Birmingham 36,379 43,108 38,708

    Bootle 70,800 77,607 83,932

    Bristol 40,723 44,289 48,835

    Cardiff 75,415 71,117 72,653

    Ipswich 27,417 30,391 29,292

    Leicester 28,403 31,510 30,923

    Nottingham 17,495 21,280 28,418

    Portsmouth 42,840 46,372 44,147

    Wrexham 25,887 31,153 31,868

    South Total 365,359 396,827 408,776

    ==================================================================================
    NS1 3,109 5,030 2,145 NS2 13,204 13,964 13,513 NS3 5,637 5,948 6,580 NS4 15,803 11,115 10,219 NS5 1,132 1,400 2,064 NS6 866 1,181 1,686 NS7 3,229 3,735 4,802 NS8 676 545 430 NS10 119 127 187 NS11 11,790 12,076 12,475 NS12 4,243 4,143 2,540 NS13 1,184 928 1,159 NS14 13,758 13,593 17,481 NS15 1,455 2,113 2,886 NS16 201 227 442 NS17 3,725 4,412 5,677 NS18 10,346 11,212 12,175 NS19 5,424 5,234 6,892 NS20 4,785 5,681 5,926 NS21 369 370 369 NS total 101,055 103,034 109,648 0

    Total On Hand 1,006,259 1,067,319 1,093,106

    Please transfer my file to Cardiff:hello: (Seriously, please don't do anything of the sort, I don't want to start all over again)

    Harry, (pro bono publico)

    Digging a bit deeper here are the results for each week from July to October for the North v South backlog competition:

    North Total 539,845 567,458 574,682 580,889 565,544 580,874 597,362 551,053 537,425 525,810 507,995 494,959 481,391 470,345 464,032 465,138

    South Total 365,359 396,827 408,776 435,169 415,856 493,500 483,265 458,739 451,489 437,467 407,353 392,680 354,108 318,122 291,019 269,375

    Are our friends in the North struggling and need help?
  • DCoddDCodd Forumite
    8.2K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭
    angelavdavis, you can request copies of all correspondance and transcripts or recordings of your telephone calls to and from HMRC. It takes a while to get them but it will give you an "audit trail" of the events that caused the delay to help you build your case.

    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/MANUALS/ntcmanual/misc_sar/registering_requesting_corres_info.htm

    This is a starting point for the process.
    Always get a Qualified opinion - My qualifications are that I am OLD and GRUMPY:p:p
This discussion has been closed.
Latest News and Guides

Cyber Monday deals

Here’s what the Deals Team have spotted

MSE Deal

How to find cheap PCR tests

The rule change comes into force tomorrow

MSE Guide