HC Deb 10 June 1912 vol 39 cc655-6W

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he has seen the Report of the Departmental Committee on Income Tax [Cd. 2576, of 1905]; whether he agrees with the views expressed therein by the principal of the Income Tax Repayment Department at Somerset House (vide reply to Question 466 on page 102 of the Report of the Committee) that a knowledge of Income Tax law and practice is required before claims to repayment can be examined; if he is aware that the principal work in the examination of a number of original claims of this nature is done by unestablished clerks to surveyors of taxes at wages varying from 20s. to 50s. per week; and whether he still proposes to treat the work of these clerks as being of a simple clerical nature and adequately remunerated?


The answers to the first two parts of the question are in the affirmative. As regards the third part, I am informed that the examination of repayment claims by clerks in the surveyors' offices is carried out under the supervision of the surveyor, who is responsible for their accuracy, and whose advice and help is given to the clerk at all stages of the work; but the work on repayment claims at Somerset House is performed by the clerks referred to in the passage of the report quoted by the hon. Member, an entirely different body, who act on their own responsibility and personally certify the amounts due for repayment to the public, and who also deal with large classes of claims, often of a complicated nature, which do not pass through the surveyors' offices for settlement, such as charity claims and claims by trades union and friendly societies. With regard to the question of the remuneration to clerks to Surveyors of Taxes dealt with in the last part of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to a question from the hon. Member for East Leeds on 25th April last.