13 Mar 2009 11:26 AM
New e-learning tool to help agents with april changes

HM REVENUE AND CUSTOMS News Release (NAT 26/09) issued by COI News Distribution Service. 13 March 2009

Two new e-learning packages to help agents and taxpayers understand the new framework for compliance checks and penalties that come into effect in April, are now available.

The free modules are available at:
* http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/e-learning/compliance-checks/Externalmodule/HTML/Externalmodule_menu.html and
* http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/about/new-penalties/NPA/HTML/NPA_menu.html

Brian Redford, Head of HM Revenue & Customs' (HMRC) Agents and Employers Service Improvement Programme, said:

"These e-learning modules are based on the training we are giving to HMRC staff and we hope they will be a useful tool to support agents in their continuing professional education.

"They have been developed with the help of practising agents and take less than half an hour to complete. We think they will be an excellent way for you to understand the changes that are happening on 1 April."

Notes for editors

1. From 1 April 2009, HMRC will have one set of powers and safeguards covering PAYE, VAT, Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax, Corporation Tax and the Construction Industry Scheme to:

* visit businesses to inspect the premises, assets and records

* ask taxpayers and third parties for information and documents.

These measures include taxpayer safeguards to ensure that the powers are used by HMRC officers appropriately.

2. The powers also include:

* greater flexibility in the rules for keeping records after 1 April 09

* new time limits for making assessments and claims to provide customers with earlier certainty. These will be fully in force for most taxpayers on
1 April 2010, with transitional arrangements for VAT from 1 April 2009.

They will not apply to individuals outside Self Assessment until 1 April 2012.

3. More information about the new compliance checks is available:

* via a free podcast which can be download to your computer, by visiting the HMRC podcast pages at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/podcasts

* at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/about/new-compliance-checks.htm

* via a mailbox for questions/comments: compliance.checks@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

4. From 1 April HMRC will have one penalty system for inaccuracies covering National Insurance in addition to PAYE, VAT, Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax, Corporation Tax and the Construction Industry Scheme.

5. More information about the penalties is available:

* via a free podcast which can be downloaded at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/podcasts

* at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/about/new-penalties/

Issued by HM Revenue & Customs Press Office
Press enquiries only please contact:
Tel: 0207147 0394/2331/2318

Website http://www.hmrc.gov.uk