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HMRC internal manual

Shares and Assets Valuation Manual

Correspondence and Customer Service: Complaint Cases

Complaints are now recorded on a departmental electronic database to which the SAV Customer Service Manager has access. For the purposes of recording statistics on the database, the definition is- ‘An expression of dissatisfaction that is not resolved at initial contact and requires a response’. See Complaints Handling Guidance at CHG405, available on the HMRC Internet site and the Intranet.

SAV support staff sift post as it arrives and should identify complaints and bring them to the attention of the SAV Customer Service Manager.

If the complaint has been addressed to someone outside SAV, such as a Minister, the Chairman, Head Office, the Adjudicator or Ombudsman, it may be referred to SAV for comment or action. It is unlikely that such a complaint would come direct to a valuer, but if it does, you should consult the SAV Customer Service Manager at once. Complaints addressed to the Head of Office or Officer in Charge should be referred to the Head of SAV through the SAV Customer Service Manager. You or your manager may be asked to provide a diary of events and comments on the complaint.

If you can deal with other complaints yourself (for example by taking prompt remedial action) you should do so after consultation with the SAV Customer Service Manager and your manager. If you have any doubts about dealing with them yourself, seek guidance from your manager. If you receive a letter or fax containing such a complaint, and you cannot deal with it substantively straightaway, you must acknowledge it within 5 days and preferably sooner. You may do this by letter, fax or telephone but a letter sent by both fax and post may be the best option. Your acknowledgement should say when a substantive reply may be expected and, if appropriate, to whom you are referring the case. Whoever deals with the complaint should aim to send a substantive response as soon as possible and not later than 15 days from receipt.

If the complainant suggests that they might take the matter further by approaching an MP, the Adjudicator or the Ombudsman, you must consult your manager and the SAV Customer Service Manager.

You should also, once the complaint has been dealt with, notify the office which sent us the valuation request (IHT, Local Compliance, LBS and so on) that we have received a complaint and give them brief particulars.

As soon as possible after responding to the complaint, but without holding up the progress of the case, you should send a copy of the complaint letter and your reply to the SAV Customer Service Manager. This applies to both complaints about our handling of someone’s tax affairs and to more general complaints about the legislation or how it operates.

  Additional Guidance: SVM150000