We are being informed that the Business Support Line that was set up in November 2008 will be closed later this year, we understand from 31st December 2009.
The message is therefore clear: if your company cannot pay VAT, PAYE, NIC or Corporation Tax get on with asking for a time to pay (TTP) deal NOW.
I am sure the HMRC will still allow TTP's in future but it will be more rigourous in assessing why the company needs a deal, how long it needs a deal over and how much it can afford per month. This will require a much more formal and detailed approach. And it won't be a ten minute conversation with a temporary call centre employee either!
If you have had a TTP that has lapsed or failed then we understand that a second TTP may be very much more difficult to get through. In that case we suggest using our structured, professional Time to Pay Programme (click for details).
So the largesse of the HMRC will come to an end, as a result we expect to see a very sharp rise in voluntary liquidations, compulsory liquidations, administrations and company voluntary arrangements. We also expect to see unemployment rising as a result of the increased insolvency activity, particularly in the winter/spring 2009/2010.