Starting from the 12th of June to the 4th of September, HMRC will be redirecting any queries made to the Self-Assessment helpline to their digital services.
The announcement was made on 8th June 2023, a few days before the date of action commenced, and will remain closed for three months, services resuming from the 4th of September.
Why was the Self-Assessment Helpline Closed?
This decision was made after taking data from the previous years and concluding that this time frame is when the Self-Assessment helpline (0300 200 3310) receives fewer calls during the summer, as compared to the rest of the year. In fact, January to April alone receives roughly 50% more calls as compared to that of June to August.
This action will free up about 350 advisors who can cater to urgent needs on other lines, ensuring that more customers get help in their time of need. This decision was also made after considering that nearly two-thirds of all SA-related calls don’t need experts and can be resolved by the customers themselves with minimum guidance.
Was This Necessary?
At first glance, it might just seem like the decision was made randomly and serves very little purpose, however, the numbers speak for themselves.
Each year, the Self-Assessment helpline receives around 5 million calls, and there aren’t enough employees to handle each request that they get. With about 350 people freed up, this will allow more customers to get their queries answered efficiently and in a timelier manner.
Can You Still Contact the Self-Assessment helpline?
As mentioned earlier, a lot of the SA related queries can be resolved by the customers themselves. This can be done via webchat and asking them online for guidance. In the case that digital assistance is not helpful, there is always an option to have a live chat with an HMRC advisor.
It is important to note that webchat is active from 8:00 am to 7:30 pm on weekdays, and from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm on Saturdays with Sunday being a holiday.
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