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‘Don’t knock HMRC’: Advisers defend enhanced PAYE system

HMRC insisted that over and underpayments would always be a feature of the PAYE system after it emerged that between four and ten million people could be in line for a repayment while at least 1.4 million face demands for unpaid tax.

There was fierce and widespread criticism of HMRC as the scale of the problem became clear but some tax advisers pointed out that taxpayers would benefit from recent improvements to the system which had brought the discrepancies to light.

The Financial Times reported on 4 September that 30 000 workers were about to receive a cheque the average repayment being around £390. But about 15 000 PAYE taxpayers would be told they had underpaid. The average underpayment would be around £1 300.

This was the outcome of a ‘first tranche’ of data analysis conducted by the new National Insurance and PAYE Service (NPS). HMRC...

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