HMRC has announced that it plans to close all its Tax Enquiry Centres, reports accountants Northampton Harris & Co. It will set up alternative arrangements for people who need help with their tax or tax credits.
The closures are planned for 2014. HMRC has 281 Enquiry Centres which in 2011/12 gave help to some 2.5m people. The centres employ 1,300 staff, which HMRC says it intends to deploy elsewhere.
HMRC says that the reasons for closure are the cost of running Enquiry Centres coupled with a fall in the number of people using them. It says that the vast majority of its customers never use an Enquiry Centre and can resolve their queries online or over the telephone instead.