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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Guy
    • By MSE Guy 21st Dec 10, 9:20 AM
    • 1,628Posts
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    MSE Guy
    MSE News: Hundreds of thousands could miss out on tax rebate
    • #1
    • 21st Dec 10, 9:20 AM
    MSE News: Hundreds of thousands could miss out on tax rebate 21st Dec 10 at 9:20 AM
    This is the discussion thread for the following MSE News Story:

    "Hundreds of thousands of taxpayers who have moved home over the past few years must tell the taxman or risk missing out on a rebate that could be worth hundreds of pounds ..."

Page 1
    • dori2o
    • By dori2o 21st Dec 10, 10:16 AM
    • 7,811 Posts
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    dori2o
    • #2
    • 21st Dec 10, 10:16 AM
    • #2
    • 21st Dec 10, 10:16 AM
    I see absolutely nothing wrong with this, yet another non story intended to yet again slag off those who work for HMRC.

    Changing address and keeping people updated of their new address is and always has been the responsibility of the individual.

    When you change address do you phone the utility company/ Sky TV/ BT to advise them? Then why not call HMRC to advise them.

    I can guarantee that if someone was receiving weekly giro's from a gov't agency they would change their address as soon as possible after the event.

    I personally don't want my address to be changed based on information supplied by a 3rd party, whether they be my employer or not. What if that information was sent, in error or even worse fraudulently?

    People need to grow up and take responsibility for their own affairs instead of leaving it to other people.
    • BAA1
    • By BAA1 21st Dec 10, 12:54 PM
    • 1,075 Posts
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    BAA1
    • #3
    • 21st Dec 10, 12:54 PM
    • #3
    • 21st Dec 10, 12:54 PM
    There seems to be a strange relationship between HMRC and some tax payers. I'm thinking about those people who have never had any direct communication with HMRC because all their tax has been simply collected via PAYE and possibly the only tax related paperwork they have ever seen is a P60 and maybe a P11D and a P45

    I'm not sure in this type of case where HMRC would normally obtain the address for that type of tax payer ? And, I can understand why these people would never think about informing HMRC when they move home.

    I agree though that this is not the fault of HMRC nor is it the fault of these tax payers, it is a shortcoming of the system.

    This is HMRC's relevant info about who should need to inform HMRC when they change name or address : http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/report-changes/individual/name-address.htm

    But how this requirement should be communicated to all tax payers is not clear to me ?

    Edit: Although my P60 does include a comment in tiny text to inform me that I need to inform HMRC of any changes to personal info, if that info were more prominent on the P60 it could help.

    Even the DirectGov website fails to mention HMRC on the main page about Moving Home - go figure
    I guess that the Post Office could include HMRC in their info about moving home / redirecting mail, which may help too.
    Last edited by BAA1; 21-12-2010 at 12:59 PM. Reason: Note re. P60 added
    • wotsthat
    • By wotsthat 21st Dec 10, 1:46 PM
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    wotsthat
    • #4
    • 21st Dec 10, 1:46 PM
    • #4
    • 21st Dec 10, 1:46 PM
    I guess that the Post Office could include HMRC in their info about moving home / redirecting mail, which may help too.
    Originally posted by BAA1
    Why? Isn't is obvious that when you move house you should inform the relevant people?
    • BAA1
    • By BAA1 21st Dec 10, 2:02 PM
    • 1,075 Posts
    • 444 Thanks
    BAA1
    • #5
    • 21st Dec 10, 2:02 PM
    • #5
    • 21st Dec 10, 2:02 PM
    Why? Isn't is obvious that when you move house you should inform the relevant people?
    Originally posted by wotsthat
    I've already said why - "I'm thinking about those people who have never had any direct communication with HMRC" - so no, it may not be obvious to that relatively large proportion of tax payers.

    There are many many things you have to think about when moving house, so if you have never communicated with HMRC before, it would not be obvious that you should include HMRC on the list of people to inform.

    If it were obvious, then this MSE article would never have been written, would it ?
    • michaels
    • By michaels 21st Dec 10, 2:06 PM
    • 22,415 Posts
    • 103,192 Thanks
    michaels
    • #6
    • 21st Dec 10, 2:06 PM
    • #6
    • 21st Dec 10, 2:06 PM
    100% agree - if you have never had any dealings with hmrc as a standard rate employee why should you think to update them with address changes.

    There seems to be a strange relationship between HMRC and some tax payers. I'm thinking about those people who have never had any direct communication with HMRC because all their tax has been simply collected via PAYE and possibly the only tax related paperwork they have ever seen is a P60 and maybe a P11D and a P45

    I'm not sure in this type of case where HMRC would normally obtain the address for that type of tax payer ? And, I can understand why these people would never think about informing HMRC when they move home.

    I agree though that this is not the fault of HMRC nor is it the fault of these tax payers, it is a shortcoming of the system.

    This is HMRC's relevant info about who should need to inform HMRC when they change name or address : http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/report-changes/individual/name-address.htm

    But how this requirement should be communicated to all tax payers is not clear to me ?

    Edit: Although my P60 does include a comment in tiny text to inform me that I need to inform HMRC of any changes to personal info, if that info were more prominent on the P60 it could help.

    Even the DirectGov website fails to mention HMRC on the main page about Moving Home - go figure
    I guess that the Post Office could include HMRC in their info about moving home / redirecting mail, which may help too.
    Originally posted by BAA1
    Cool heads and compromise
    • wotsthat
    • By wotsthat 21st Dec 10, 3:14 PM
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    wotsthat
    • #7
    • 21st Dec 10, 3:14 PM
    • #7
    • 21st Dec 10, 3:14 PM
    100% agree - if you have never had any dealings with hmrc as a standard rate employee why should you think to update them with address changes.
    Originally posted by michaels
    OK. If you think that you shouldn't have to update them who do you think should?

    Are we talking about grown-ups here?
  • janinandover
    • #8
    • 21st Dec 10, 3:14 PM
    Missing out...
    • #8
    • 21st Dec 10, 3:14 PM
    It's not just HMRC - Department of Work and Pensions also need to know.

    When my late husband was ill in 2000 and his carers benefit was not appearing, I discovered when I chased DWP that the letters were going to an address he had last lived in thirty years before! They also seem to have two payment databases as when I reached pensionable age, they automatically started to pay my pension to my 2000 bank account, even though they my current details.
    • le loup
    • By le loup 21st Dec 10, 3:51 PM
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    le loup
    • #9
    • 21st Dec 10, 3:51 PM
    • #9
    • 21st Dec 10, 3:51 PM
    as when I reached pensionable age, they automatically started to pay my pension to my 2000 bank account, even though they my current details.
    Originally posted by janinandover
    So, you didn't get an advice and a questionnaire? They didn't give you a telephone number to get in touch about payment? They didn't ask you if you wanted it Weekly, four weekly etc.?
    Gawd knows how you got paid!
    • le loup
    • By le loup 21st Dec 10, 3:54 PM
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    le loup
    100% agree - if you have never had any dealings with hmrc as a standard rate employee why should you think to update them with address changes.
    Originally posted by michaels
    So you don't get notices of coding? You wouldn't miss them if they were sent to your old address?
    • BAA1
    • By BAA1 21st Dec 10, 3:58 PM
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    BAA1
    OK. If you think that you shouldn't have to update them who do you think should?

    ....
    Originally posted by wotsthat
    Nobody has said that the individual shouldn't be responsible for informing HMRC and all other relevant organisations of changes to personal details.

    But, any reasonable person must see that if the individual has never had cause to communicate with HMRC in the past, (or DWP or others), then it is not beyond the bounds of imagination that the individual may not consider the need to inform them, surely you can agree with that ?
    • BAA1
    • By BAA1 21st Dec 10, 4:02 PM
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    BAA1
    So you don't get notices of coding? You wouldn't miss them if they were sent to your old address?
    Originally posted by le loup
    There are 10s - 100s of thousands of tax payers who never receive notices of coding - just scan through other topics on this forum if you don't believe me
    If HMRC sent a P2 form to every tax payer, (10s of millions), the whole tax system would grind to a halt under the work load.
  • Former MSE Dan
    Hi folks,

    I'm glad there is lively debate going on this. The very reason for the story (it is about to lead our weekly email too), is that not everyone realises you have to directly tell HMRC. We did a quick poll on Martin's facebook page which got a decent number of responses - and 60% of people who had changed address hadn't told the taxman.

    This obviously isnt scientific and we wouldnt claim it is. Yet it definitely told us that there is a clear need for this story to be put out. We are a site about saving money and helping consumers, and this absolutely falls into both categories.

    Dan
    • Mikeyorks
    • By Mikeyorks 21st Dec 10, 8:32 PM
    • 10,287 Posts
    • 4,696 Thanks
    Mikeyorks
    Yet it definitely told us that there is a clear need for this story to be put out.
    Originally posted by MSE Dan
    Which is fine. And the fact that a lot of people don't tell HMRC is borne out by the fact they run a highly staffed tracing service. So we're all paying for those who rather myopically consider 'someone else presumably does it'. If they consider it's the employer's job ..... do they also consider the employer advises their Bank of an address change? After all the employer probably puts more money in the account than anyone else - so why not?

    But it's this flavour of the News item I object to :-

    .... but the sheer scale of the blunder
    There is no 'blunder' ..... it is not the responsibility of the employer to signal an address change .... it's that of the employee. And most of these people not only don't change their address with HMRC - they don't redirect their mail either. So ID related material from HMRC / Banks/ utilities etc is at risk of getting into the hands of others and who may abuse it.

    On the subject (mainly earlier posts on this thread, but encapsulated here) :

    Most employees have few dealings with HMRC as tax is taken by their employer under PAYE
    ..... it's simply not true. In the annual bulk coding issue every year HMRC issues in the region of 15M to 16M P2(Coding Notices) to individual employees. They follow that up with a further 4M issued in-year .... not all of which will relate to bulk issue items. So they cover around 18M individual employees every year. Which is a fair percentage of PAYE payers who receive at least one personally addressed communication every year.
    If you want to test the depth of the water .........don't use both feet !
    • chrismac1
    • By chrismac1 21st Dec 10, 9:34 PM
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    • 1,548 Thanks
    chrismac1
    "The sheer scale of the tax code blunder is monumental. Over five million errors have been found already and there are millions more suspected."

    Note the blunder concerned is nothing to do with the address issue. It clearly refers to the sheer number of errors HMRC have admitted to in the past 6 months on PAYE. In my view 95% plus of the UK electorate would regard this as a monumental failing by an organisation which itself is usually intolerant of mistakes made by taxpayers. The word negligent could be added as there have been many warnings from within HMRC, the accountancy profession and others that this day of reckoning was coming and they've gone unheeded.

    I deal with HMRC every single day and it is by a mile the worst feature of my job. I'd much rather negotiate with a UK bank for a small business loan for a client, for example - which itself is like getting blood out of a stone these days.

    Complacent jobsworthy error-ridden non-customer focussed arrogant negligent blunder-prone aggressive unsympathetic

    There have been a few times lately when I've given someone from hMRC heartfelt thanks and said "that's great, thanks for being so helpful about this." Then I've hung up the phone and thought "Actually what they've just done is pretty box standard in any half-decent UK company. It's only exceptional performance in the context of HMRC."
    • Mikeyorks
    • By Mikeyorks 21st Dec 10, 9:55 PM
    • 10,287 Posts
    • 4,696 Thanks
    Mikeyorks
    Note the blunder concerned is nothing to do with the address issue. .
    Originally posted by chrismac1
    Note the word 'flavour' in front of my quote. As the whole article is written on the biased assumption that somehow HMRC should pick up address changes from employers. And the only contra to that is a quote from HMRC.

    It clearly refers to the sheer number of errors HMRC have admitted to in the past 6 months on PAYE
    What are the errors HMRC have admitted to in respect of underpayments / overpayments .... which is the more specific reference? Remembering back several threads I recollect your usual self advertising take on these being that '50% of the P800s contained howlers'? To only admit, much later in the thread, that only one of your clients was in any way affected.
    It's always a problem when you exaggerate ........... remembering what you've said!
    If you want to test the depth of the water .........don't use both feet !
    • chrismac1
    • By chrismac1 22nd Dec 10, 5:42 AM
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    chrismac1
    6 million errors. 6 million. How much of an exagerration is that, exactly?
    • BAA1
    • By BAA1 22nd Dec 10, 8:48 AM
    • 1,075 Posts
    • 444 Thanks
    BAA1
    ....

    Most employees have few dealings with HMRC as tax is taken by their employer under PAYE
    ..... it's simply not true. In the annual bulk coding issue every year HMRC issues in the region of 15M to 16M P2(Coding Notices) to individual employees. They follow that up with a further 4M issued in-year .... not all of which will relate to bulk issue items. So they cover around 18M individual employees every year. Which is a fair percentage of PAYE payers who receive at least one personally addressed communication every year.
    Originally posted by Mikeyorks
    I'm not sure which figures are accurate, but a BBC news article from January this year quotes :
    The CIOT said the scale of the problem might be indicated by the fact that this year about 25 million coding notices are being distributed, which is about twice last year's number.
    If these numbers are correct, then they would hint at the fact that HMRC would normally only send out approx 12.5 million P2s which would indicate that prior to the current exceptional year, "Most" tax payers would not have received a P2 since there are approx 30.5 million income tax payers (according to HMRC figures)

    Note, in this current year, a proportion of those extra 12.5 million P2 forms could have been sent to an old address so it is anyones guess how many P2s have actually been received
    Not to mention the fact that some people have received 2 or more P2 forms this year.
    • le loup
    • By le loup 22nd Dec 10, 11:40 AM
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    • 3,954 Thanks
    le loup
    My, my wife's and my M-in-L's tax affairs are relatively straightforward but We have NEVER not received a Notice of Coding ... and I go back many years.
  • Nosamp
    I got Martins email and updated my address details on the HMRC website and now I want to follow the advice "Once the address is updated, ask HMRC if it sent a letter to your old home"
    Can I do this online or via email as I don't seem to be able to find where?

    Thank you
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