HMRC write off £5 billion in uncollected tax

29 June 2012

taxbillUh-oh. Those glorious swine at HMRC have been doing their accounts and, for 2011/12, it transpired that it overpaid around £2-£2.5 billion in tax credits and underpaid up to £290 million as a result of fraud and error, according to a report by a National Audit Office.

Taxes totalling almost £5.2 billion were written off. The report found there had been an increase in taxes which HMRC has decided not to pursue, which includes £756 million worth of income tax in 2011/12 alone.

House of Commons Public Accounts Committee chair, Margaret Hodge, said she was shocked by ''the sheer scale of waste and mismanagement'' at HMRC.

Ms Hodge said: ''Sadly it is no surprise that the NAO has found substantial problems with the HMRC's accounts. This year has seen a litany of tax errors and scandals come to light with mistakes made at the most senior level from the permanent secretary for tax downwards.

''The sheer scale of waste and mismanagement at HMRC never ceases to shock me. Without even mentioning the tax gap, in 2011/12 the department wrote off a staggering £5.2 billion of tax owed, overpaid nearly £2.5 billion in tax credits due to fraud and error and underpaid around £290 million... With its long history of large scale IT failures, the department needs to get a grip before it introduces its new real-time PAYE information systems and begins the high-risk move from tax credits to the universal credit.''

An HMRC spokesman said: "HMRC has collected £474.2 billion in tax revenues this year - the highest-ever total. We have increased our tax take by £4.5 billion against a very challenging economic backdrop. The £5.2 billion debt written-off figure relates to irrecoverable debt, where there is no practical way to pursue the liability"

TOPICS:   Banking   Tax

10 comments

  • Zleet
    Bloody hell, didn't realise Jimmy Carr was being paid that much!?!
  • Alan
    Yet the twats are quite happy to collect tax from me underpaid from about 4 years ago. cheers
  • Alexis
    With the number of firms going under, there are companies that would have paid tax, but obviously can't because they don't exist any more. Not really HMRC's fault - more of a Cameron\Osborne issue.
  • Loz
    7 years ago in my case, they have just sent me another demand after 3 years of silence >:-(
  • Mustapha S.
    The main problem is that the HMRC won't negotiate. You ever pay up or go bust. Take Rangers for example, rather than settle they'd rather not see a penny. Same for my old employer, owed a shed load of tax, but knew we would have enough to pay off by the end of 2012 so asked to defer till 2013. HMRC said 'no', so we liquidated ourselves and started up another company doing exact same thing with no debts, except the money that would have gone to HMRC will now end up as part of my xmas bonus. Ridiculous how they go after soft targets like individuals but utterly impotent against cowboy outfits like us.
  • me
    Cunts charged me 550 quid on the unpaid tax on the year that I earned my shitiest money in my life. Called then up and told then that I can pay in 3 years so it will hurt me less! UTTERLY CUNTS!
  • captain c.
    They are chasing me for £68 they claim my employer failed to take in PAYE for 2010/11
  • Peppa p.
    You can understand why they don't negotiate though. In the same way that the government doesn't negotiate with terrorists. It would set a dangerous precedent
  • me
    They don't negotiate with terrorists. They give them houses, money and if they need care they put them in a hospital under care of a 30k per year nurse. CUNTS!
  • Shooter M.
    Mostly down to the former footballing outfit, Glasgow Rangers, judging by all accounts

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