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HMRC should employ more staff as backlogs mount

HMRC should employ more staff as backlogs mount

People who have just become self-employed will have to wait up to 8 weeks for their registration to be processed says HMRC.

The Revenue has explained that it has had to redeploy tax officials to more high priority work and so processing time for paper applications of form 64-8 and self-assessment registrations will also be affected.

This will not affect Internet authorisations but HMRC warns that further delays may incur if tax agents submit the 64-8 form online after previously submitting it on paper.

One personal tax adviser commented that a delay of 8 weeks for registering newly self employed freelancers sounds as if HMRC wants to put people off paying tax altogether!

Meanwhile, HMRC is likely to suffer more job losses when the results of the Comprehensive Spending Review are released in October. The Association of Revenue and Customs however points out that this is not necessarily a sensible move as HMRC does generate revenue for the government.

The president of the ARC, Graham Black, said it was ridiculous to cut more jobs at HMRC. He suggests increasing staffing levels to bring in more tax and catch tax evaders and he will outline his case to MPs on September 8th at Westminster.

Since 2006-07, the amount of money collected by HMRC has dropped by £25bn and the amount spent on dealing with the tax gap has almost halved from £3.6bn to £1.9bn. Every pound the government spends on dealing with tax evasion will reap 30 times that amount, or even more. Any logical person would jump at such an investment opportunity, Black remarked.

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Image: AAAARRRGGGHHH by Evil Erin

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