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I didnt tell HMRC I stopped working. Am I in trouble?

(51 Posts)
susanawan Thu 16-May-13 13:04:57

Ok so first of all I'm not proud of what I've done but I really need help.

Last year march I was getting income support and other benefits because I'm a single parent and I have a 5 yr old daughter. I was keen to get out of benefits and start working so I got a job as a trainee beauty therapist. It was not apprenticeship but train while you work so I was given 600 pounds a month as salary and I was working 42 hours a week. After about 2-3 months I had to leave the job but I didn't notify HMRC that I stopped working. I was scared that they would stop paying me working tax credits and child tax credits. I thought I would go back to benefits until I got another job but My employer ( who was giving me 600 p/m) never gave me any pay slips or even p60 That you are meant to get after yo stop working or p 45 or any document. So I was stuck with not applying for benefits and not telling hmrc about stopping work. Now Last month I called HMRC and told them that I have just stopped working ( koz I was done with being scared that they would find out, But now I'm scared that they will still find out . They said ok and the changes will take place in 28 days. Now I'm sooooooo scared that they will find out That i havent worked since 10 months. There must be a system for them to find out right?? Though there was no paper work but my employer took my N.I number before I started working so I believe Im going to be in trouble soon. I also sent HMRC my tax form stating I was working the same. Please don't judge me and just tell me what should I do. I havent heard anythin from HMRC since I told them that I've stopped working. Nothing about an investigation or anything bad.
What should I do now? Will they definitely find out that I wasn't working? Or should I just stay quiet and let the matter die as they know I'm not working anymore. Or should I just confess and may be they will b lenient that way
Please give me honest advice. Thank you so much

AgentProvocateur Thu 16-May-13 13:26:26

You'll probably get found out and have to pay back the money that you fraudulently claimed. You should have gone to the job centre when you stopped working and explained about the payslips/P60 situation. If you didn't get payslips, how do you know your employer paid your NI?

It's all a mess, and you should probably go and get advice from the CAB or somewhere.

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 13:29:35

If he didn't pay tax then why did he ask for my NI number and made me fill in the form? I know I've been stupid and I will slowly pay the money back if they ask for it. But I dont know should I wait for them to find out or should i just write to them sad

WeAreEternal Thu 16-May-13 13:33:47

When you quit 10 months ago did you start claiming benefits again?
Or did you just live on the working tax credits and the child tax credits as your only income?

noisytoys Thu 16-May-13 13:37:33

You will probably be found out and it will catch up with you. I don't earn enough to pay tax or national insurance but my employer still has my NI number and it is all still on my payslips. It's best to be honest now because it will look worse if you leave it

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 13:38:26

when I stopped working I didn't claim any benefits. Mainly because I couldn't. I didnt have any pay slips or anything to prove that I had stopped working or that I was working in the first place. I'm so stressed out though I haven't even been caught yet sad

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 13:39:56

I was never given any pay slips or any documentation even after I stopped working. That's making me think should I just let it go because I've stopped getting working tax credit anyway now? Thoughts guys???

WeAreEternal Thu 16-May-13 13:45:58

You will probably be found out, they are pretty good at working these things out, so be prepared for it.

However, if your employer never registered you as an employee, which he should have done, then it will be difficult for them to establish when you ended your employment.

My advice would be to contact your previous employer, pretend you have received a query from hmrc about your ni and employment or something similar, and ask if he has a record of your employment and your p45 etc so that you can't send it to them.

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 14:02:00

I have tried calling the salon where I used to work but as usual they are too busy to call back. sad I can't stop shaking.

WeAreEternal Thu 16-May-13 17:25:46

Realistically you have two options.

1, call HMRC, tell them everything, and arrange to pay back the money that you fraudulently claimed.

2, Don't say anything and hope they don't find out, but be prepared for the fact that they probably will on day. You will probably worry about it constantly, and you should start putting money aside to prepare to pay back the money if they demand you pay it back.

Ultimately it's whether you can live with yourself and the worry or not.

Sh1ney Thu 16-May-13 17:35:05

Good god. Calm down! I don't foresee a lengthy prison sentence for you.

However - it's time to come clean. Make an appointment with your local job centre to discuss benefits. Tell them when you stopped working. Tell them when you last received working tax credit. They will assist you in going through all that you're entitled to now.

Then call the tax credits helpline. ' hello I stopped working in blah blah month and continued to receive benefits until blah blah month so I understand I will have been overpaid . Please can you tell me what I should do next? '

Honestly - just deal with this factually and all will be well.

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 17:53:45

I'm too scared to come clean just now. But I'm preparing myself for the worst. And if they ask for the money I will pay back monthly what I can But I think I should just wait for them to find out i guess sad

Theselittlelightsofmine Thu 16-May-13 18:14:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 18:23:47

I did end up with less money but My problems were bigger at the point. Going through divorce and family pressure. But I did get child support so I barely managed.

LIZS Thu 16-May-13 18:23:54

Presumably it is the tax credits and ctc op is worried about having to repay and the amount received would have outstripped JSA or IS had she claimed it . I suspect you would have been below the tax allowance so paid none but NI should have been deducted (lower earnings limit was £107pw last year). You could request a P60 now (after all the tax year has recently ended) but not sure which tax form you have returned to HMRC and lied on confused

Relaxedandhappyperson Thu 16-May-13 18:30:59

Were you being paid below minimum wage? Really low pay and no payslips makes it look like HMRC might be interested in your employer!

Get some advice from CAB or someone and don't worry. It is time to get it sorted though. Be brave and you will feel better and can pay back any overpayment (if there is one).

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 18:49:28

LIZS : I dont know anything about the form, HMRC sent me the form and I just filled it in October last year I think like I was working and mailed it. And they kept paying me WTC and CTC sad
I'm not sure about minimum wage but because it was a junior in salon role and learn while you work ( not apprenticeship though) so It was 150£ per week for 42 hours a week. I don't think I was earning enough to pay any tax. I am hoping they won't find out sad

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 18:51:38

Thnx a lot Relaxedandhappyperson

I think it's legal to pay that low if you are learning while working but I'm not too sure. But do you know how does HMRC finds out if somebody wasnt working while they claimed that they were working sad

LIZS Thu 16-May-13 18:57:33

You/employer won't have paid NI which could affect your ability to claim JSA in future.

Relaxedandhappyperson Thu 16-May-13 19:03:00

Sh1ney has the best advice.

Have some brew now and start tackling it tomorrow.

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 19:39:43


susanawan Thu 16-May-13 19:40:06

I will keeep you guys updated

RedHelenB Thu 16-May-13 20:26:16

It will be the WTC not the child tax credit that you weren't entitled to & any child care costs. You will be due a renewal form very soon which will want details of how much you earned from April 2012 - 2013. this is where it could throw up a query.

I would personally ring up & come clean & at least then you know where you stand.

susanawan Thu 16-May-13 20:56:36

Red helen B

Ohhhhhhh so the form I filled and posted in October was for April 2011- April 2012? It means I didnt lie in that form because I was indeed working in that period. Ohhhhhhhhhhh

LIZS Thu 16-May-13 20:57:51

Did you keep a copy of it ?

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