Revenue Adjudicator finds taxing workload

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The Independent Online
ELIZABETH Filkin, the first independent Adjudicator for aggrieved taxpayers, had 235 complaints waiting for her when she started work last Thursday.

Her appointment was announced a month ago, and Revenue officials predicted that she would receive between 30 and 50 complaints a week. But Ms Filkin is receiving an average of nearly 60 a week.

A number of the complaints have been referred back to complete the Inland Revenue's internal complaints procedure, which they must do before Ms Filkin can look at them.

Complaints about problems before 5 April this year will normally be excluded.

Elizabeth Filkin, a former chief executive of the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureaux, will consider complaints about the Inland Revenue's handling of personal tax affairs, covering such grievances as delays, errors or discourtesy. She can recommend compensation. She will not look at problems that hinge on tax law and regulations, as these are already dealt with by general or special commissioners.

But Ms Filkin may be able to intervene if a taxpayer's bill has simply been miscalculated.

Details about the Revenue's complaints procedure and the Adjudicator's office are included in the leaflet You and the Inland Revenue, (IR120), available from local tax offices.

Complaints to the Adjudicator should be addressed to: Revenue Adjudicator's Office, 3rd Floor, Haymarket House, 28 Haymarket, London SW1Y 4SP. (071) 930 2292.