Customs and Revenue welcome morale boost
Citizens’ Charter standards at Customs & Excise and the Inland Revenue have risen over the past five years.
The only Charter mark to show a downturn was the Revenue’s response time to taxpayers’ letters. Just over 90% were dealt with within 28 days, compared to almost 99% in 1992/93.
Otherwise, the Revenue reported steady improvements in its service, with 99% of repayment claims completed within 28 days, and almost 97% of personal callers at tax centres seen within 15 minutes.
Customs increased its overpaid duty claims processing rate to 90% within 30 working days, backed by 99% of VAT registrations processed within 15 working days.
The report on the Charter’s progress, Citizens’ Charter – Five Years On, also reveals that a range of new and improved qualitative standards for Customs’ Business Advice Centres will be introduced to improve the handling of telephone calls, written enquiries and face-to-face meetings.
A Revenue spokesman said officials were pleased with progress. ‘While our performance in dealing with post has fallen back,’ he said, ‘this reflects only one aspect of a whole gamut of Revenue services.’