During the first lockdown HMRC paused most debt collection activities, which has contributed to the total UK tax debt of £39bn according to The Public Accounts Committee. HMRC have stated, “We are recouping debt safely, taking into account customers’ circumstances and making repayments affordable. It’s in no-one’s interests to push viable businesses into insolvency when they can succeed given some time to repay their tax debts.”
HMRC are also recruiting almost 2,000 extra staff over the next year to support collection efforts.
MP’s across the UK have expressed concerns that HMRC are not being proactive in identifying and offering support to those whom have been left economically vulnerable due to the pandemic and therefore less able to pay debts.