For the first time in years, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) exceeded its average five-minute waiting time per call target in 2019.
On average taxpayers waited six and a half minutes to get through on the phone in 2019, but others waited far longer, according to the latest figures to the end of December, released this month.
As call waiting times have surged taxpayers, turning to the HMRC for help with their tax affairs, are hanging up before even getting through on the phone. According to official figures over the past nine months close to four million people hung up the phone while on hold and did not call back.
Owen Kyffin, director at Whitley Stimpson said,
“For individuals and small businesses delays in getting through to the tax authorities can be particularly problematic. Making mistakes on tax returns can easily lead to investigations, which can often take many months to resolve and cause huge amounts of stress.”
He added, “HMRC have introduced digital services like web-chat and online tax accounts to try and help taxpayers get what they need without having to call, but sometimes customers want to talk to a tax expert directly.”
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