Last Thursday I attended the agent workshop on CIS (Construction Industry Scheme) Repayments. In addition to all the HMRC specialists, there was a good attendance from agents, some representing their professional rep bodies and some independent practitioners representing their local Working Together groups. They were all keen to share their anecdotal experiences of how the process had worked this year.
The processing delays this year were discussed at some length and at times in a lively fashion! It was clear that issues could have been better communicated. A key learning point for HMRC was that they should manage expectations about repayment turnaround times during peak periods and recognise that HMRC delays cause real problems for them.
Personal Tax Operations, who have operational responsibility for CIS processing, gave the workshop a good explanation of the up front investment they have put in to getting things right for processing the 2013/14 repayments next year. Real Time Information means that we will be able to start processing CIS repayment claims a month earlier next year, so in mid May rather than mid June. As well as this, PT Ops are confident that as long as forecast receipts are the same as in previous years, they now have enough staff trained up to deal with the initial post on hand within the first few weeks of processing so the aim is to be working post on the day of receipt from mid June so meeting the published 15 day turnaround from then.
We’ve agreed to hold a further workshop to look at process for 2014/15 repayments in early 2014 so I’ll let you know what happens then.