Dec 10th Guidance proves HMRC may listen but they don’t understand. Advice on next steps.

To say yesterday’s long-promised guidance from HMRC was a massive disappointment is a massive understatement. The same goes for the feedback we were promised from the Treasury after last week’s meeting. As I’ve said, the officials in the room were clearly listening to everything we were saying. What’s now so very painfully apparent is they are still not understanding the scale or the scope of the problems these new regulations have created for the very smallest of UK – and European – businesses.

The full government document is here. It’s essentially the same information that we had last week. The only useful thing it does is clear up (some of) the confusions that HMRC created themselves with their ill-advised attempts to deal with this crisis over Twitter and webinars.

You can read a summary of the feedback and the new guidance here via Enterprise Nation. Their notion that this is anything positive baffles me. As you’ll see from the comments, a lot of other people think the same.

So what can we do now?

We must make enough noise that the relevant departments here in the UK government and in the EU Commission simply cannot ignore us.

Tomorrow, Friday 12th December, will see this featured on BBC Radio 4’s ‘You & Yours’ programme. If you can listen in, great. If not, catch it later on iPlayer. Most important of all, tweet, email, contact the programme however you prefer, to let them know this really is a massive issue.

See if you can get your local paper, radio or TV news interested in the story, maybe by referencing that?

Write to your MP, your MEPs and other representatives. Pull no punches.

We need to make Europe aware of this disaster. There is a new online petition to bring all this to the attention of Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs. Please sign it and spread the word!

Please also send your emails direct to

Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs – pierre.moscovici@ec.europa.eu

Maria Elena Scoppio, cabinet member – maria-elena.scoppio@ec.europa.eu

Simon O’Connor, communications adviser – simon.o’connor@ec.europa.eu

Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President – frans.timmermans@ec.europa.eu

Maarten Smit, Timmermans cabinet – maarten.smit@ec.europa.eu

Andrus Ansip, Vice-President for the Digital Single Market – andrus.ansip@ec.europa.eu

Jörgen Gren, Ansip cabinet – jorgen.gren@ec.europa.eu

Jyrki Katainen, Vice President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness – jyrki.katainen@ec.europa.eu

Heidi Jern, Katainen cabinet – heidi.jern@ec.europa.eu

Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society – gunther.oettinger@ec.europa.eu

Michael Hager, chef de cabinet – michael.hager@ec.europa.eu

Latvian presidency represenative, Jana Salmiņa – jana.salmina @mfa.gov.lv

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