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Rude letters from the PAYE debt collector?

24th July 2011

We have been receiving a number of complaints from clients and associates about a letter which says something along the lines of “we have tried contacting you about an underpayment but you have failed to co-operate. We will take steps to recover the monies from you”.

OR

“we wrote to you recently and asked you to pay the amounts due or contact us. Our records show that you have done neither”.

Another variation of the letter does not even include a phone number!

Receiving one of these frightening letters does not necessarily mean that you have not paid your PAYE or Nic contributions! The bacs reference needs to be exactly correct (especially the final four digits which contain the year and month the payment relates to) and the time of payment needs to be in the month AFTER payment of salary if the salary is paid at month end. Apparently the HMRC computer does not have the sense to allocate the correct payment to the correct period.

One would think that if month 11 is overpaid by £1000 and month 12 is underpaid by £1000 the computer simply makes an adjustment and you don’t receive a threatening letter. One would be wrong.

To summarise – if you have paid, do not panic but do ensure that you pay at the right time (if using online banking specify the date in advance) and with the correct reference number

If you are still experiencing problems, please contact us .