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New Taxpayer’s Charter

I suspect that no-one apart from tax professionals has actually bothered to look at HMRC's new consultation on a charter for “HMRC and its customers”. Since the publication starts by suggesting what roles the charter would play and in any case it will not have any legal force, the cynic would say there seems little point.

However, there are some interesting points about seeking a broad range of views in respect of the way HMRC interacts with its “customers” and it would appear that the charter will, as a minimum, fulfil the following:

  • provide users with “headlines” about their rights and responsibilities;
  • set out a statement of some of the broader values of HMRC with regard to its relationship with customers; and
  • establish the standards of service that customers can expect from the organisation.

Apparently it will cover broad principles such as treating customers courteously, dealing with issues promptly, being fair and professional, etc.

I have to say I still find the term “customers” a tad irritating when actually one has no choice about whether or not to interact with HMRC. My personal view aside, however, if you do have strong views about HMRC’s current stance with regard to the way it acts, the way it deals with you, etc., this is your opportunity for your voice to be heard.

 

 

Date: 20th August, 2008
Author: Cathy Corns

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