Consultation outcome

Supporting customers who need extra help – a new approach

This consultation has concluded

Download the full outcome

Detail of outcome

HMRC published a summary of responses to this consultation on 31 July 2013.

Original consultation

This consultation ran from 14 March 2013 12:00am to
24 May 2013 11:45pm

Summary

Some HMRC customers need extra help to get their taxes and entitlements right. We want to provide this support in a way that suits them. It needs to be easy to access and affordable, both for customers and for the taxpayers who fund our services. We know the current system does not meet the needs of the people it was designed to serve, so we plan to introduce a new service that is more accessible and tailored for customers who need it.

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Consultation description

Some HMRC customers need extra help to get their taxes and entitlements right. We want to provide this support in a way that suits them. It needs to be easy to access and affordable, both for customers and for the taxpayers who fund our services. We know the current system does not meet the needs of the people it was designed to serve, so we plan to introduce a new service that is more accessible and tailored for customers who need it.

Subject of this consultation

HMRC recently carried out in-depth research to give us a much better understanding of customers who need extra help getting their tax right and claiming their entitlements. The results of that research are helping us to design a new service for those customers, so we can better target support at people who need help the most.

We are proposing to

  • pilot and introduce a new model for helping customers who need extra help with their taxes and entitlements, including access to expert support through redesigned telephone and face-to-face services.

  • close our Enquiry Centres because face-to-face support to those who need it will be delivered through the new services

No final decision will be made until we have consulted on and piloted the new service, and fully assessed the findings of the consultation and the pilot.

Scope of this consultation

We want to gather as much feedback as we can from people and organisations who are interested in the changes. We would welcome views on:

  • how that extra help will work in practice

  • the impact of the changes and, specifically, the proposal to close Enquiry Centres, on particular groups of customers

  • the impact of the new service on the voluntary and community sector as a whole

  • how we can best support customers who don’t need extra help to resolve their queries, but who currently use our Enquiry Centres, to use our online and telephone services.

Who should read this

Anyone can send us views on the changes, but we would particularly like to hear from:

  • any voluntary and community sector organisations that represent people who need help to get their tax and entitlements right

  • a wider set of voluntary and community sector organisations that represent customers who need extra help; for instance, organisations helping people with mental health problems, people who have difficulties in hearing and seeing and people with reading problems

  • people who may be directly affected by the new service.

How to respond or enquire about this consultation

See below for ways to respond. Enquiries relating to this consultation should be sent to us by the email or postal address below. If you provide us with contact details we may use these to provide you with an update on this consultation.

Additional ways to be involved

If you are an organisation representing people who may be affected by the changes and want to discuss these issues with us before making a formal response, please get in touch with the lead official: Libby Martin, HM Revenue & Customs, 7th Floor East Spur, Euston Tower, 286 Euston Road, London, NW1 3UQ

We are also planning to run a number of workshops across the UK over the coming months, inviting customers to meet with us so we can hear their views about our proposals first hand.

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