HMRC resource shortage spreads to self-assessment

Published: 9th June 2023

HMRC has announced that the general self-assessment helpline will be closed to taxpayers for several months. When will it reopen, and what should you do in the meantime?

HMRC’s self-assessment helpline (0300 200 3310) will be unavailable from 12 June until 4 September 2023. The agent dedicated line has previously been restricted (though the service resumed on 5 June), and the VAT registration helpline was also closed recently in an effort to divert staff to help clear backlogs in other areas. This latest move shows just how much pressure HMRC is under in relation to staffing. It should be noted that the summer is typically a quieter time for tax return filing, and the helpline will be open again in time for the traditionally busier autumn and winter months, but it’s issued some guidance on where to find help online in the meantime:

If you’ve been issued with a tax return but don’t meet the criteria that require one to be filed, you (or your authorised agent) need to formally request that it be withdrawn. This can’t be done online via the personal tax account, so you will either need to write a letter or use the HMRC webchat service.