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HMRC issues fresh tax debt demands

13 January 2011

Around half a million UK taxpayers can expect bills for underpaid taxes totalling £180m, HMRC has revealed, while a further 250,000 cases involving pensioners will be written off. The scale of the underpayment, which has come to light as the taxman clears its daunting backlog of cases, was made public yesterday by Exchequer Secretary David Gauke.

Mr Gauke confirmed that the pensioners’ write-off applies to underpayments from the tax years 2008-09 and 2009-10, while nobody will be asked to reconcile tax debts predating the tax year 2007-08. He described HMRC’s approach as “sympathetic” and explained the decision to write off older debts was taken because the taxman had arguably failed to act promptly on information supplied.