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Published on 5 December 2007

Our recent survey showing poor performance by banks and HMRC regarding tax over-deducted from bank interest has been followed by HMRC publishing an update of its leaflet on the subject. It is late; it is incomplete; it is unhelpful to those with disabilities; it lacks customer focus and merely confirms how badly HMRC serves its low income customers.

Published on 3 December 2007

It is not uncommon for HMRC to lose letters and claims from their customers. When the Tax Credit Office loses tax credit claims it is the customer that is forced to claim again. This can mean a significant loss of tax credits. But HMRC’s own guidance says that claimants should receive one-off system payments when they can produce evidence of a lost claim.

Published on 28 November 2007

Some take the view (including some parliamentarians) that the introduction of ‘playback’ on tax credit annual renewal forms solves the question for claimants of ‘why did this overpayment occur’. Playback does help sometimes; but HMRC are far from giving claimants what they need.

Published on 23 November 2007

If you are someone overcoming a disability or the parent or carer of someone who is, we hope our new brief guide to some of the tax matters that might affect you will prove helpful.

Published on 21 November 2007

The Chancellor of the Exchequer announced yesterday that HMRC had lost two computer discs containing the personal records of child benefit recipients. These discs contain details of some 25 million individuals and 7.25 million families.

Published on 20 November 2007

Investors who made a panic withdrawal from their Northern Rock Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) are to receive special consideration. But what does this mean for investors in future and will this create a precedent?

Published on 12 November 2007

Over many years LITRG has conducted small surveys of how banks provide help to their low-income pensioner population. Every time we have done that we have been disappointed by what we have found. Those pensioners who are not taxpayers need help from their bank to prevent tax being deducted from interest on savings accounts.

Published on 10 October 2007

Today the HMRC Chairman is due to face the Public Accounts Committee to discuss progress in collecting the £3.9 billion of tax credit overpayments which were outstanding at 5 April 2007. LITRG wishes that as least as much attention were spent on understanding why such overpayments arise and how unfair it is to expect low-income families to repay some of this debt.

Published on 9 October 2007

Alastair Darling was cautious in his first Pre-Budget address, and failed to redress the blow to low-income taxpayers delivered by his predecessor. Tax liabilities for those on very low incomes will rise next April because of the abolition of the 10% starting rate on earnings and pensions.

Published on 4 October 2007

The Treasury published a consultation in June this year looking for ways to improve the Gift Aid system and so increase charitable giving across the UK.

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