How long before clients’ tax affairs are handled by AI at HMRC?
Can you imagine resolving tricky issues with a chat bot?
Recent experience with computerisation of MTD and other processes would seem to evidence that any additional digitisation of HMRC systems will likely be some time away. Any yet, when technology does move, it tends to move swiftly. All-be-it with a few hiccups along the way.
Logically, the UK tax code is determined by legislation and case law. In which case, this entire system could be downloaded and made accessible to enquiry. Initially, expect to have any conversation via your keyboard; eventually, who knows, will HMRC AI responses have a voice?
This would certainly solve the Treasury’s need to reduce headcount and costs.
Up and coming practitioners, new to the advisor game, will no doubt embrace this extension of AI. But there will be many who rue the day that the face of HMRC was no longer a fellow human being.
On a global level, the five countries with the most complex accounting and tax systems are: Argentina, Bolivia, Greece, Brazil and Turkey, while the five least complex are the British Virgin Islands, Denmark, Curacao, Switzerland and Hong Kong.
According to the International Accounting Bulletin the UK’s systems are the 11th most complex.
Based on this assessment of complexity, do not expect any sudden switch to AI call centres at HMRC any time soon.
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