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Sub-Committee Inquiry into HMRC

27 October 2010

The Treasury Sub-Committee is today launching an inquiry into the administration and effectiveness of HMRC

The operation of HMRC has come under close scrutiny in the last few months as a result of the most recent round of PAYE reconciliations. The Department is subject to a significant efficiency programme and must make further savings as a result of the Comprehensive Spending Review. Looking ahead, the Government has made tax compliance a priority, with funding being made available in the CSR, and recently concluded a consultation on PAYE reform.

The sub-committee’s inquiry will build on its predecessor’s work, which identified areas of concern in relation to the impact of the efficiency programme on HMRC’s performance, staff morale within the organisation and its performance on issues such as the payment of tax credits. Its inquiry will focus on the following questions:

  • HMRC’s performance as an organisation and whether it is delivering its key aims;
  • What the implications are of HMRC’s spending review settlement;
  • Whether HMRC is able to deliver the Government’s aims on tax compliance;
  • Whether PAYE reform is necessary; and
  • What HMRC’s priorities should be for the future?

The sub-committee invites written submissions on these and related points. Guidance on how to make a written submission is given below. 

Please be aware that the Sub-Committee cannot not investigate individual cases. 

Complaints against HMRC that have exhausted HMRC’s own complaints procedures should be addressed to the Adjudicator’s Office

The Chairman of the sub-committee, Mr George Mudie MP, said:

“HMRC was criticised heavily over the end of year reconciliations. Like most government departments it will have to make sizable cuts in administration. We will examine how HMRC is doing its job, whether it can do it better and what the future holds following the Spending Review settlement.”

Notes on submission of written evidence

Written evidence should be in Word or rich text format—not PDF format—and sent by e-mail to The body of the e-mail must include a contact name, telephone number and postal address. The e-mail should also make clear who the submission is from. The deadline is 12 midday on Wednesday 17 November 2010. Submissions should be no longer than 3000 words. Submissions should be in the format of a self-contained memorandum. Paragraphs should be numbered for ease of reference, and the document must include an executive summary.

View further guidance on the submission of evidence.

Submissions should be original work, not previously published or circulated elsewhere. Once submitted, your submission becomes the property of the Committee and no public use should be made of it unless you have first obtained permission from the Clerk of the Committee. Please bear in mind that Committees are not able to investigate individual cases.

The Committee normally, though not always, chooses to publish the written evidence it receives, either by printing the evidence, publishing it on the internet or by making it publicly available through the Parliamentary Archives. If there is any information you believe to be sensitive you should highlight it and explain what harm you believe would result from its disclosure; the Committee will take this into account in deciding whether to publish or further disclose the evidence.

For data protection purposes, it would be helpful if individuals wishing to submit written evidence send their contact details in a covering letter. You should be aware that there may be circumstances in which the House of Commons will be required to communicate information to third parties on request, in order to comply with its obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.