HMRC processes 70,000 RTI submissions despite IT issues

MORE THAN 70,000 REAL-TIME PAYE SUBMISSIONS have been processed by HM Revenue & Customs since the system’s introduction on 6 April.

The biggest overhaul of the income tax system for 70 years sees PAYE reported on or before the date payment is made, while changes will be reported as and when they occur, rather than at the end of the financial year.

Companies encountered some difficulties submitting over the weekend, which HMRC said was caused by “routine, bi-annual maintenance” of its IT portal. Companies accessing the site at the time were met with the message “We’re currently testing the service and experiencing lengthy delays to submissions”.

Sage said it helped 18,807 small businesses make their first submissions after the “shaky start”, something small business director managing director Lee Perkins said “puts HMRC firmly in the spotlight”.

“There was understandable confusion and frustration over the weekend with businesses unable to file due to HMRC site issues,” he said. “It also underlines why moving payroll submissions to RTI is so important, reducing reliance on HMRC’s website and being up and running with real-time PAYE.”

Ruth Owen, HMRC director-general for personal tax, said: “It is great news that so many employers have started to report PAYE in real time.

“But we are under no illusions – we know that it will take time before every employer in the country is using RTI. We appreciate that some employers might be daunted by the change – but they don’t need to be. HMRC is on hand to offer help and support and we are taking a pragmatic approach – which includes no in-year late filing penalties for the first year.”

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