On 30 June 2021, HMRC published a policy statement announcing that as economic activity returns to normal, it will resume its debt collection work. HMRC is, therefore, contacting all customers with tax debts with a view to agreeing a way forward for repayment.
HMRC has noted that many customers will not be able to pay their liability straight away and says that, in these circumstances, affordable payment options can be discussed. This could include setting up a payment plan to enable customers to pay what they owe in affordable instalments.
HMRC has, however, stressed that even if customers cannot pay anything straight away, they should still contact HMRC. For those who ignore HMRC’s communications or refuse to pay their taxes, the government may then use enforcement powers to collect its debt (including seizure of goods, summary warrants and insolvency proceedings).
The government has, though, promised to take an understanding and supportive approach as protecting livelihoods and keeping people in work remains its priority in the aftermath of the pandemic.