I've made a costly mistake at work

(19 Posts)
LittleDoe Sat 29-Sep-12 20:48:37

I found out at 5pm on Friday that we have missed a tax payment. The company could face a fine of up to £7,000. I feel absolutely sick and am racked with guilt. My assistant normally sets up the payments and I authorise them but she was on holiday last week and she obviously forgot to remind me about it before she went. It's just slipped through the gap. I'm her line manager so ultimately responsible for the error - I should have had a checklist in place and didn't.

I know what to do - fess up, take responsibility and have a clear plan of how to avoid the same thing happening in the future. And will also have chat with colleague about her role in the error.

But honestly I feel so guilty and disappointed with myself. I am beating myself up. It's my DD's 1st birthday party tomorrow and I want to enjoy it but this issue just keeps coming back into my head and I can't think of anything else.

Help!

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 29-Sep-12 20:51:36

Can you phone before you get a fine and arrange an immediate transfer? Aren't they more lenient if you contact them?

On a smaller scale it once worked for me.

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 29-Sep-12 20:52:53

Oh happy birthday to your DD. hopefully you'll be so busy with an excited one year old that you'll enjoy your day.

amillionyears Sat 29-Sep-12 20:56:59

Oh heck.Poor you.
I think I would have to try and tell myself that I will think about it not until 9pm tomorrow or whenever.
There is no way I would want to sort of miss my DDs 1st birthday.
I think that when you get up tomorrow,and have to organise everything,and people arrive etc,that that should help to keep your thoughts about the other matter temporarily out of the way.
Enjoy your DDs 1st birthday tomorrow!

PedallingSquares Sat 29-Sep-12 20:58:36

Is it the first time you have been late with your payment? Normally if you recify it very quickly they will let you off the first time. Certainly I would be surprised if they gave you the maximum penalty for a first offense.

These things happen. Learn what you can from it, make sure it can't happen again and try not to beat yourself up too much.

Happy birthday to you DD btw.

ovenchips Sat 29-Sep-12 21:01:46

I'm sorry I can't give you practical advice but please don't be so hard on yourself, you have made a genuine mistake and that can't be helped.

If it's any consolation I once sent out a blank company cheque. Signed but the rest blank. I think it would have been good for up to oooooh fifty grand or so, without any extra signatories. Fortunately the people it was sent to were honest and contacted us. I felt like an utter numpty but didn't castigate myself for it, it was an honest mistake.

Try and not dwell on it and focus on your dc's birthday. A one year old's birthday is a lovely, lovely thing to enjoy.

ICantStandLosing Sat 29-Sep-12 21:02:26

Which tax was it? I am assuming it was VAT as that's the one that attracts the biggest fines. But you usually have till 7th if following month to pay, so maybe not. Sympathies, I know that sick feeling. Can you ring HMRC on Monday and send a grovelling letter? IME they can sometimes be lenient.

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 29-Sep-12 21:04:59

HMRC have a business support line open on a Sunday. It's 0845 302 1345
see here for more info do you have enough company info at home you could make the call?

LittleDoe Sat 29-Sep-12 22:09:45

Thank you, yes it was VAT but we're in a payments on account regime so amounts are due by last working day of month. Unfortunately it's not the first error (another was made when I was on mat leave) hence why fine might be so high.

My job share is going to call HMRC first thing Monday as I don't work Mondays but thanks for that number, I may call tomorrow.

I'm just gutted!

Keep telling myself it's not life and death...and yes I will enjoy DD's birthday.

MisForMumNotMaid Sun 30-Sep-12 20:10:11

I hope your DD had a lovely birthday, and you enjoyed yourself too. The fines appear to be on a sliding scale. It's in the above link. I'd still try to make contact and demonstrate the system being put in place to prevent it happening again. Nothing to loose.

bran Sun 30-Sep-12 20:21:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tribpot Sun 30-Sep-12 20:32:13

I think if there's any way you can, I would go in to the office tomorrow (I know it's not your normal day) and deal with your boss face to face. For preference, phone the HMRC yourself rather than your job share doing it. (If it was me, I'd want to speak to HMRC myself).

It was a genuine error. And one that other people have made, since it happened before when you were on mat leave! I think if you can show you are genuinely remorseful - which you clearly are - to your employers, and sensibly have a plan to prevent a recurrence - which you do - you should be fine.

LittleDoe Sun 30-Sep-12 21:09:18

Yes you're right, I think it might be better for me to phone. I can't go into work but should be able to do it from home.

DD's birthday was lovely but am now both physically and mentally exhausted! Not a relaxing weekend by any stretch of the imagination.

onemorebite Sun 30-Sep-12 22:50:15

i was supervising someone on a deal and they sent £15m to an incorrect bank account - missing our client's year end. Client went ballistic but I was away with the fairies as I had just found out I was pregnant about 2 hours earlier! Bank fortunately found the anomaly and allocated it to the correct account.

So no advice - but might help but things in perspective!

LittleDoe Tue 02-Oct-12 08:06:31

Perspective is good!

colditz Tue 02-Oct-12 08:08:38

It could be worse, you could have pulled a Clegg

LittleDoe Wed 03-Oct-12 22:09:21

smile

Just as an update, I've spoken to HMRC who said our fine is likely to be at 2% not 5% as first thought so at least that's something. Have also told my boss and spoken to our tax advisers so although not out of the woods yet, am feeling a teensy bit better about the whole thing!

A problem shared is a problem halved so they say....

tribpot Wed 03-Oct-12 22:11:08

Well, that's good news!

How has your boss been with you about the mix-up?

NeDeLaMer Wed 03-Oct-12 22:17:08

Hi Doe - how did your boss take it?! (Is it his company or is he just a line manager?).

Did you grovel properly?? (to HMRC not your boss!)

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now