Saturday 12 September 2009 4.37pm
I've got to admit it, my wife is right, I am slowly but surely morphing in to Victor Meldrew!
The reason for today's moan-up is the letter I received this morning from the tax man. The letter, which of course incurred postage, contained three sheets of A4 paper and a leaflet. The leaflet was to inform me of the various ways to pay any tax which might be owed. The first sheet of A4 explained how my tax had been worked out using the current bands. The second one told me how much I had earned, (which I already knew as I had to enter this amount from my P60 amount on my tax return,) and how much tax I had paid, (which I also already knew as I had to enter that on the tax return also.) The third sheet of A4 Thanked me for my tax return and informed me that I had underpaid tax for the previous tax year ending April 2009. It also stated that I would be informed at a later date, (by letter again of course,) whether or not this amount would be collected through PAYE or would have to be paid on demand. If the latter was the case then it would have to be paid before 31st of January 2010 or would incur interest and surcharges. I don't know the total cost of producing all of this nonsense, but it's surely more than the 20p I am informed I owe the tax man!! Oh yes, 20p, I kid you not. I'm fed up with the trite phrases such as: 'standard procedure' and 'computer generated.' What ever happened to common sense? Why doesn't the tax man wave all 'over' and 'under' payments that are less than, say £5 and donate any surplus to charity? I can't imagine anyone having a problem with that. If there are more underpayments than overpayments then so what? If the cost of producing these daft letters is taken in to account, there won't be much in it. Oh, I almost forgot. Last year I had OVERPAID by 25p! Gospel truth, and I recieved the same paperwork. Perhaps it's these wild fluctuations that necesitates the tax man keeping a close eye on me. Back on a serious note, I took early retirement and my only source of income is my pension from my previous employer. The only fluctuation is the £200 or so a year it increase in line with inflation. On this I am deducted tax at source via PAYE. What could be simpler? Neverhteless, these letters will continue to arrive on my doormat year after year involving the same paltry amounts of overpaid or underpaid tax. Barmy!