Read the latest on the Agent Forum, 22 February 2021

Feb 22, 2021

Check out the latest items on the Agent Forum. Remember, in order to view each item you must be signed up and logged in.

All agents, who are a member of a professional body, are invited to join HMRC’s Agent Forum. This dedicated Agent Forum is hosted in a private area within the HMRC’s Online Taxpayer Forum. You can interact with other agents and HMRC experts to discuss topical issues and processes.

HMRC’s latest update on the agent forum is also available.

Agent Forum (AF)

As at the end of December 2020 the Forum had 1271 registered subscribers including Professional Bodies, which now exceeds the amount of 1229 users signed up to its predecessor forum. We are separately inviting various customer groups with Capital Gains payment liabilities or Trust registration responsibilities to HMRC; the Law Society and Society for Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEPS) amongst them. Registrations have for the first time exceeded the levels of its former platform and participation and issues traffic are increasing. We are also stepping up our recruitment of internal HMRC users. Thus far during 20/21 we have dealt with 450 widespread issues, across all Heads of Duty. We continue to support agents and their clients through the COVID-19 crisis and have a live dedicated panel to deal with related issues and publish guidance for all associated schemes including the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS), Job Retention Scheme (JRS) and Eat Out to Help Out scheme. We now also have two new boards, one for UK transition and one for Self-Assessment 2021. We have in conjunction with our Issues Overview Group (IOG) stakeholder colleagues, put in place procedures to identify high priority widespread issues to be taken forward for resolution with our internal technical specialist and communications partners.  This is being monitored by the Agent Forum team and others. We continue building our internal HMRC Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) capability, formalising recruitment from across HMRC to improve the quality and timeliness of issue resolution responses and to focus on Agent Forum operations. Performance metrics thus far for 20/21 include over 30,300k forum views and 395 resolved topics since April 2020, which are all moderated daily with appropriate responses given, as determined by subject matter, related traffic generated, and referrals provided by line of business. We have reviewed our performance metrics to more effectively manage our live ‘aged cases’ portfolio, given we better understand new functionality provided by the MS Dynamics platform.  

The Digital Customer Support Services (DCSS) Agent Team is staffed by a Service Manager and 3.5 FTE Moderators, having been joined by 2 new staff at the beginning of January, who moderate and run the forum.”