Guernsey income tax staff verbally abused after delays

Guernsey's director of income tax has said he will not tolerate his staff being verbally abused by taxpayers.

Rob Gray said abusive calls had been received from customers angry at delays in the processing of 2010 tax returns.

He said the usual 11 staff had been reduced to seven due to sickness, retirement and resignation, meaning an allocation of 5,000 clients per worker.

Mr Gray said his staff would "terminate any telephone conversation where the caller makes abusive remarks".

He said the tax office aimed to deal with returns within four months of receipt but at the beginning of June, staff had not yet completed the processing of forms submitted at the end of January.

As at the end of May, 26,978 tax returns for 2010 had been received from employees in Guernsey and Alderney, of which 8,862 had been assessed.

This left 18,116 - or 67% - still to be dealt with.

Mr Gray said: "The team is under immense pressure and tax officers are doing their utmost to deal with as much correspondence and as many returns as they can, but despite this they have fallen behind."

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