Lincoln jobs at risk as HMRC tax enquiry centres close

A number of HMRC staff in Lincoln are facing redundancy as the government moves to close all of its 281 tax enquiry centres across the UK.

There are 36 posts in Lincolnshire, with the nearest centre being in Cromwell House on Crusader Road in Lincoln.

There are also centres in Gainsborough, Grantham, Louth, Scunthorpe, Grimsby and Boston.

HMRC hopes to get staff working in tax enquiry roles into other jobs elsewhere across the authority.

HMRC plans to close the centres due to less people using the service — nationally, figures have fallen from five million in 2005/06 to 2.5 million in 2011/12.

The body believes it costs around £152 per enquiry, so using telephone, home visit or online services would save £13 million per year.

HMRC plans to modernise its enquiry services with a new telephone and online setup, and a new pilot scheme to test the service will begin shortly.

Residents will now have to raise their query online or over the telephone, where an advisor will then decide if the query requires a face-to-face visit.

Lin Homer, HMRC chief executive said: “We will give a more specialised phone service for customers whose affairs can be resolved over the telephone, and face-to-face help to those who need it, visiting them at a place convenient to them, saving them both travel and time.”