Wednesday, 3 June 2009

The Revenue do it better

I've had my fair share of problems dealing with HM Revenue.

But in one respect, they deserve a gold star.

That's how they let anyone file a Tax Return online, using approved third party software, so long as the filer (not sure that word exists) has the right reference number.

And a Return can be filed on someone else's behalf, too. So I can file Tax Returns for my mum and dad without having to go through the giant holding bay that is the 64-8 submission process.

Companies House, on the other hand, deserve a slap with a wet fish for being in the Dark Ages.

To file accounts online with them, you have to download and fill in their abbreviated accounts template. That's after you've already spent [put in the number of hours here] completing accounts using third party software like IRIS, Digita and VT (my own favourite).

And, you can only do that if you know two different codes for the company, as well as the company's number.

I guess an extra layer of security is a good idea because company accounts are on the public record, which Tax Returns are not.

But does the process have to be so laborious? Surely, if HM Revenue can approve third party software for filing Tax Returns, Companies House could do the same for filing company accounts?

P.S. I tried downloading the accounts template for my own company. That was about 20 minutes ago and the page has stuck. Maybe it doesn't like my company because the next accounts filing date is in the future...

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