Jonathan Causebrook

Letter to HMRC

HMRC have upset me today. So I have written a open letter to them. Please feel free to share and if anyone knows the #Queen, could you make sure she reads it too!


Dear Deputy Director Marian Wilson Ė HMRC
cc. The Queen

Thank you for your letter yesterday informing me that on my tax return two years ago I appear to have accidently made a mistake that means I owe HMRC some extra money. I have looked into this and agree I have unwittingly made a small blunder and have no issues in repaying as soon as possible.

The exact reason for this is difficult to say, as it was two years ago (I can hardly remember what I had for breakfast this morning, must be getting old eh?!!).

I have spoken to ĎIaní at your office today (I expect you know him, nice man, Scottish I think, and unusually for someone living in modern day Europe, didnít have a surname.) I have apologised and explained my error and offered to pay the amount immediately. However he declined to take it at this time as he wanted to apply a fine of around £360 first. (Not as nice as I originally though then, boo!).

In fairness to good old Ian, your letter to me yesterday does state: "If your tax return contained an error because reasonable care was not taken when completing it, we will charge you a penalty" And goes on to say this will be subject to interest.

I find this a little difficult to swallow given that in said letter, whosoever wrote it (was it you? go on, Iíll bet it was!) missed a digit out of the all-important phone number (letter attached for reference). So the number was unobtainable leading to great excitement and causing me to turn detective in order to establish it (I felt like Sherlock Holmes for a while, but without a eminent side kick or chronic drug addiction, obviously!! ;-) )

I accept this was probably an innocent mistake on your part, and we are all human and I donít hold it against you, I am sure you are very thorough normally. However I canít help but feel you must have written it without ĎReasonable care and attentioní. Ironic eh?

Me and my Dr Watson (yes - I found one, still no drug habit though) did chuckle about this! We deduced that as I had received on Monday, the letter was probably written on Friday afternoon, perhaps after lunch?! Ė Elementary my dear Marian!

To that end I am afraid I am going to have to return the honour and issue you with a similar fine of £20. This needs to be paid to me my cheque by the 1st of December 2016. Failure to do so, as per your own terms, will see the fine start to accrue interest on a daily basis. (I am not sure what rate that will be yet, have to wait and see! Exciting isnít it!! ;-) )

If you should decide that my error was a simple, innocent mistake with no intent to defraud the good old Queenie, I will consider cancelling my fine to you also. After all we are all friends really!!

As you collect on behalf our monarch (and Iíll bet you donít send her letters and fines do you?, No, I didnít think so!) I have decided to copy her in on this correspondence to seek her views. Given she is also the head of a significant religious house, I suspect she will agree with me and show her enormous compassion towards one of her lowly, but honest subjects.

Lastly, Just as and aside, I find asking people things nicely and clearly, rather than over officious letters works much better. I find itís best to look for the good in someone before assuming the bad!

Like I say, just a tip, maybe you could work that into your next letter to me! :-)

Please donít re-fine me for bad grammar or poor spelling, I wouldnít want this to become churlish.

Hope you are enjoying the unseasonal good weather!!

Hope to hear from you soon, donít leave it too long!! :-)

Lots of love

P.S you can call me on my mobile to discuss any time, luckily for you there isnít very often a half hour wait to get through so it wonít cost you a fortune! My number is <*removed for social media*> (I have checked it, twice, definitely correct!)

Jonathan Causebrook - October 2016 (c)