Professional bodies unite to urge Chancellor to improve HMRC service levels

Professional bodies representing hundreds of thousands of professional accountants and tax advisers write open letter to Chancellor calling for greater investment in HMRC service levels

The heads of ten leading UK professional bodies have signed an open letter urging the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, to prioritise investment in HMRC’s service levels in his upcoming Budget statement on 15 March 2023. The letter signed by the leaders of ten professional bodies say customer service levels at HMRC are “unacceptably low” and urges the Chancellor urged to prioritise investment in HMRC at the Budget to improve public sector finances and boost productivity.

The group of professional bodies represent hundreds of thousands of accountancy and tax advisers working across the UK, from small and microbusinesses to multinational organisations.

The letter notes the Public Accounts Committee’s recent claims that £42 billion in taxes have not been collected at a time when HMRC customer service staff numbers have been cut by 24 per cent in the past five years. It also argues that the delays and business disruption faced by their members has become “a regular occurrence when dealing with HMRC” with some businesses waiting upwards of six months for repayment and relief claims.

The signatories of the letter commented: “Our members are increasingly facing severe delays, business disruption and frustration when dealing with HMRC which is having significant ramifications for taxpayers, business owners and their agents. If the government wants to meet its economic objectives and boost productivity, it must invest in improving customer service and effectiveness at HMRC. We urge the Chancellor to treat this as a top priority in his upcoming Budget.”

- ENDS - 

Notes to editors

The letter was signed by:

  • Sarah Beale, Chief Executive Officer, AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians)
  • Abdul Goffar, Director, Association of Chartered Certified Accountants UK
  • Jane Ashton, Chief Executive, Association of Taxation Technicians
  • Andrew Harding, Secretary General, Chartered Institute of Management Accountants
  • Ken Pullar, Chief Executive Officer, Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals
  • Helen Whiteman, Chief Executive, Chartered Institute of Taxation
  • Michael Izza, Chief Executive, Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales
  • Bruce Cartwright, Chief Executive, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland
  • Ami Copeland, CEO, Institute of Certified Bookkeepers 
  • Mark Walley, Chief Executive, STEP

The full letter can be read here.

For media enquiries, contact:

ACCA News Room
Twitter: @ACCANews

About ACCA

ACCA is the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. We’re a thriving global community of 241,000 members and 542,000 future members based in 178 countries and regions, who work across a wide range of sectors and industries. We uphold the highest professional and ethical values.

We believe that accountancy is a cornerstone profession of society that supports both public and private sectors. That’s why we’re committed to the development of a strong global accountancy profession and the many benefits that this brings to society and individuals.

Since 1904 being a force for public good has been embedded in our purpose. And because we’re a not-for-profit organisation, we build a sustainable global profession by re-investing our surplus to deliver member value and develop the profession for the next generation.

Through our world leading ACCA Qualification, we offer everyone everywhere the opportunity to experience a rewarding career in accountancy, finance and management. And using our respected research, we lead the profession by answering today’s questions and preparing us for tomorrow.

ACCA and CA ANZ have formed a strategic alliance for the benefit of members and to help shape the future of the profession. Find out more about us at