Treasury: Billing

Treasury written question – answered on 9th September 2019.

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Photo of Marion Fellows Marion Fellows SNP Whip, Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Small Business, Enterprise and Innovation)

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, for what reasons his Department did not adopt Santander's new electronic bill payment service for post offices.

Photo of Jesse Norman Jesse Norman Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) fully investigated all alternative bill payment options including the replacement product offered by Santander at the Post Office, and found in that case that it was not technically or financially viable. The new system using bar-coded bills is not compatible with HMRC’s unique customer reference numbers for their various tax regimes. These reference numbers are essential in order to manage HMRC’s millions of customers and ensure payments are credited to customers’ records correctly and as quickly as possible.

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