Revenue apologises over PAYE mix-up

HM Revenue & Customs has been sending incorrect demands for underpayment of taxes because of a mix-up over a discount for filing PAYE forms online.

Businesses and individuals that took advantage of a £250 reduction in their 2005-06 tax payment for filing their 2004-05 returns online have received demands from HMRC for the money to be paid in full with interest.

A spokesman for HMRC said incorrect notices had been sent because of errors on employer’s annual return forms and that anyone disputing the payment should call the number on the letter they receive. “If an error has been made we will apologise immediately and no payment will have to be made,” he said.

Later retirement could hit insurance

Planned rises in the legal age of retirement could mean higher employer’s liability insurance premiums, according to Reynolds Porter Chamberlain the insurance law firm.

Business owners are already concerned about the additional costs of keeping on staff as result of government proposals to increase the state pension age by three years before 2050. These proposals, outlined in a government white paper in May, are open for consultation until September 11.

However, according to Gavin Reese, a partner at RPC, if employees are allowed to retire later, the potential loss of earnings will be higher, resulting in higher liability insurance premiums.

“The increased pension age may seem a long way off but it will have an immediate impact on insurers. They will have to swallow the additional costs or factor them into their premiums,” Mr Reese said. Jonathan Moules

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