Complain about HMRC

Contact HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) as soon as possible if you have a complaint about their service.

This guide is also available in Welsh (Cymraeg).

You can make a complaint if you’re unhappy with the service provided, for example because:

  • you received a poor service
  • there were unreasonable delays

Follow a different process to:

You should continue to pay tax while your complaint is being dealt with. If you stop or delay your payments you may be charged interest or penalties.

How to complain

Complain online

If you’re signing in to the service for the first time, you’ll need a Government Gateway user ID and password - if you do not have a user ID, you can create one when you use the service

You can:

If you’re signing in for the first time as an individual, you’ll need your National Insurance number and 2 of the following:

  • a valid UK passport
  • a UK photocard driving licence issued by the DVLA (or DVA in Northern Ireland)
  • a payslip from the last 3 months or a P60 from your employer for the last tax year
  • details of a tax credit claim if you made one
  • details from a Self Assessment tax return if you made one
  • information held on your credit record if you have one (such as loans, credit cards or mortgages)

Complain by phone or post

You can also complain by phone or post. You’ll need:

  • your National Insurance number, Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) or VAT number
  • your full name, address and phone number
  • details of what happened and when
  • to say how you’d like your complaint resolved

If you need extra support with your complaint

Tell HMRC when you complain if you need extra support with your complaint because of a health condition or your personal circumstances.

If you need someone to complain on your behalf

You can ask someone else to complain for you. You’ll need to authorise them to deal with HMRC on your behalf before they can make a complaint for you.

What happens when you complain to HMRC

HMRC will review your complaint. This is called a ‘first tier’ review.

HMRC will tell you:

  • the name and contact details of the person dealing with your complaint
  • which stage of the complaints process you’re at and what the next step is

After HMRC has reviewed your complaint, you’ll be told the outcome of the first tier review.

HMRC will not treat you any differently because you’ve made a complaint. They will handle your complaint fairly, confidentially and investigate the issues thoroughly.

HMRC will consider refunding any reasonable costs directly caused by their mistakes or delays. Costs can include:

  • postage
  • phone charges
  • professional fees

Keep your receipts if you want a refund.

If you disagree with the outcome of the first tier review

You can ask for your complaint to be reviewed a second time. This is called a ‘second tier’ review. HMRC will tell you how to do this.

A different person will review your complaint and tell you the outcome.

If you disagree with the outcome of the second tier review

You can ask the Adjudicator’s Office to review your complaint. HMRC will tell you how to do this.

This service is free and independent of HMRC.

You can only ask the Adjudicator’s Office to look at your complaint if you’ve had a first and second tier review from HMRC.

If you disagree with the Adjudicator’s Office

You can ask your Member of Parliament to refer your complaint to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.