Taking Stock – Take DIY approach to registering your views.

With the passing of the 31 January self-assessment filing deadline, tax advisers will probably be pouring themselves a few large drinks and reassuring themselves that the nightmare is over for another year. Sadly, this is not the case. For instance, if you’re interested in telling the Revenue just what you think of its enquiry procedures, then you’d better pick yourself up and get on with it. The consultation period ends on 29 February. TS understands that in an effort to take the initiative, the Revenue is compiling a questionnaire for practitioners who want to contribute to the debate. A good and commendable idea – on the face of things. Give busy practitioners some boxes to tick, standardise responses, chuck them at a computer and analyse the results. One problem remains, however. Questionnaires won’t be available until, yes, you’ve guessed it, the end of February. The Revenue is apparently taking advice on what the form should contain. TS can see a certain pattern emerging here. Wasn’t it the Revenue that was accused last year of taking an age to deal with enquiries and repayments? Weren’t there also accusations aplenty from fed-up tax accountants whose clients were asked to pay surcharges because the tax office couldn’t process claims in a timely way? The message is clear. If you want to register your views – the answer, as ever, is: ‘do it yourself’.

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