The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) has issued an update concerning delays that some taxpayers have been suffering in receiving repayments of overpaid tax under Self-Assessment. The tax faculty of the ICAEW was advised by HMRC that this delay has been caused by increased checks carried out to tackle fraudulent claims, such as identification verification checks.
It is understood that this issue was first raised back in March of this year. HMRC wrote to certain Self-Assessment taxpayers due a refund of tax to check that the claims were not fraudulent. These taxpayers were asked to confirm details as HMRC had reason to believe that the taxpayer’s unique taxpayer reference (UTR) may have been used fraudulently. Whilst other taxpayers were asked to complete an R38 – Claim an Income Tax refund form and return it with proof of identity and address along with various other pieces of personal information.
HMRC is now working to process outstanding repayment claims and hopes to their service levels will have improved by the end of November, and that going forward, claims should be processed within 30 calendar days from receipt.