More HMRC strikes

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Industrial action could cause disruption at HMRC on Monday as up to 55,000 union members stage a half-day strike, report Chartered Accountants Northampton Harris & Co.

The protest will hit the start of the new tax year and the introduction of Real Time Information – where employers operating PAYE are required to notify HMRC immediately every time they pay their staff and make deductions.

Employees will stage a half-day strike on Monday that will end at 1pm when they walk in to their respective workplaces.

An HMRC spokesman said he expected there to be increased service delays due to the strike action, but stressed: ‘We will be doing what we can to ensure its business as usual. Phone lines will open as usual but people may want to call later in the afternoon or the following day.’

The action has been organised by the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) over its opposition to cuts to pay, pensions and working conditions. The union has asked for talks on the key issues affecting civil servants, but so far, the government has refused to negotiate.

Plans for strikes at the Home Office and border agency members on Monday have been postponed by the PCS after a legal challenge.

Monday’s planned strike is the second at HMRC in less than a month after it was hit by industrial action on Budget Day on March 20.

Nearly three quarters of HMRC employees are members of the union, with 73% of a total staff of 74,983, union members.

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