HMRC sets up Civil Disorder helpline

Accountants may be interested to learn that HMRC has stepped in to help small businesses that suffered during the riots that swept across parts of the UK last week.

At the end of last week, the Revenue announced that it had set up a dedicated helpline to offer as much help as possible to victims of the violence. The Civil Disorder helpline will provide businesses and individuals with comprehensive advice and HMRC says it will deal sympathetically with callers’ problems.

Staff manning the helpline will be able to agree payment schedules with those who cannot settle their VAT and other tax liabilities because of short-term financial problems. Furthermore, they will discuss practical solutions if the caller is unable to meet other obligations to HMRC.

The coalition has also announced that funding will be made available to help businesses get back on their feet after the violent outbursts.

Small businesses are also advised to keep in contact with their clients and customers in the aftermath of the chaos, especially if their business suffered damage or loss.

Meanwhile, the Revenue has advised parents to keep them informed about their childrens’ education plans. If children intend to stay on at school once they reach the age of 16, parents must tell HMRC or they will see their child benefit payments stop at the end of August.

Parents should tell HMRC what course their child will be attending, the dates of the course and the name and address of the educational institution he/she will be attending.

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