all HMRC phone numbers

John Cross made this Freedom of Information request to HM Revenue and Customs

The request was partially successful.

From: John Cross

12 September 2009

Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing to request information about HMRC phone numbers under
the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Please provide me with a list of all HMRC phone numbers together
with a description of what the number is used for.

For the avoidance of doubt your response should include:

- numbers of offices, branches and departments
- numbers of general helplines
- numbers of helplines for specific taxes/issues

Where is a non-geographic number (starting 0845, 0870 etc) with a
geographic alternative (starting with an area code) please include
both numbers on the same line of the list.

As an example:

(1) IR35 Helpline: 0845 303 3535 geo: [area code][number]
(2) National Insurance Registrations: 0845 915 7006 geo: [area
code][number]

Yours faithfully,

John Cross

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From: Request, FOI (G&S Cen Pol FOI )
HM Revenue and Customs

14 September 2009


Attachment FOI 2115 J Cross.doc
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Message sent on behalf of FOI/DPA Team

The information in this e-mail and any attachments is confidential and may
be subject to legal professional privilege. Unless you are the intended
recipient or his/her representative you are not authorised to, and must
not, read, copy, distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it.
If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender
immediately.

HM Revenue & Customs computer systems will be monitored and communications
carried on them recorded, to secure the effective operation of the system
and for lawful purposes.

The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs are not liable for any
personal views of the sender.

This e-mail may have been intercepted and its information altered.

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

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From: Smith, Bill (IMS Strategic Communications)
HM Revenue and Customs

6 October 2009


Attachment 06.10.09 Cross reply.doc
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Dear Mr Cross

Please find attached reply in relation to your Freedom of Information
request of 12/09/09.

Yours Sincerely

Bill Smith <<06.10.09_Cross_reply.doc>>

Bill Smith | IMS Strategic Communications | 020 7147 3488 | 07887 501658 |

The information in this e-mail and any attachments is confidential and may
be subject to legal professional privilege. Unless you are the intended
recipient or his/her representative you are not authorised to, and must
not, read, copy, distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it.
If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender
immediately.

HM Revenue & Customs computer systems will be monitored and communications
carried on them recorded, to secure the effective operation of the system
and for lawful purposes.

The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs are not liable for any
personal views of the sender.

This e-mail may have been intercepted and its information altered.

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

Link to this

From: John Cross

7 October 2009

Dear Sir or Madam,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of
Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of HM Revenue &
Customs's handling of my FOI request 'all HMRC phone numbers'.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is
available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/al...

I am not seeking internal extension numbers for individual
employees. I believe that HMRC could provide the information I seek
with the cost limit.

Yours faithfully,

John Cross

Link to this

From: Sharpe, John (CenPOL)
HM Revenue and Customs

2 November 2009

Dear Mr Cross,

I refer to your e-mail of 7 October asking for a review of HMRC's reply
to your earlier request.

In your original request you asked:-

. Please provide me with a list of all HMRC phone numbers together
with a description of what the number is used for. For the avoidance of
doubt your response should include:-

o numbers of offices, branches and departments - numbers of general
helplines - numbers of helplines for specific taxes/issues

o Where is a non-geographic number (starting 0845, 0870 etc) with a
geographic alternative (starting with an area code) please include both
numbers on the same line of the list.

HMRC replied that because of the number of offices and staff compiling
this information would exceed the cost limit.

In your review request you said:-

I am not seeking internal extension numbers for individual employees. I
believe that HMRC could provide the information I seek with(in) the cost
limit.

HMRC never interpreted your request as including individual extensions;
had we done so the potential costs would have been even greater. I am
afraid the fact remains that, given the very considerable quantity of
possible numbers included your request as it was originally phrased, which
would include an analysis of the:-

1) All direct lines across all of HMRC's estate

2) All official mobile telephone numbers

3) Geographic numbers for the non-geographic public numbers.

The appropriate limit of £600 will be exceeded. And that would be the
case even if we excluded mobile numbers from the exercise.

By far the most resource intensive part of your request is item (1)
closely followed by (2) if you required mobile numbers too. As part of
your request exceeds the appropriate limit HMRC is not required to deal
with those parts that are cheaper to process. But as we said it is open
to you to make a modified request; the following information might assist
you with that decision.

Even if we could assemble the information for 1, and/or 2 if needed,
within the fees limit it would not necessarily mean that we would disclose
it. Because of the sensitivity of some of the roles or the potential for
disruption to the day to day work of non-public facing staff it is very
likely we would withhold numbers relating to internal administration,
sensitive law enforcement work, policy advice, in house lawyers, personnel
work, liaison with external contractors and very senior staff.

As I mentioned earlier, because part of your request exceeds the
appropriate limit, we are not required to answer any subset of it.
Outside the terms of the Act I can tell you that HMRC publishes numbers by
which the public can contact us at this link
[1]http://search2.hmrc.gov.uk/kbroker/hmrc/... ;it
includes the non- geographic phone numbers which fall with part 3 of your
request. And, as you have annotated it, you are also aware that HMRC has
released some geographic numbers in response to this request:-

[2]http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ge...

HMRC has also released details of other geographic numbers in response to
other FOI requests. They have been published on this website
[3]http://www.saynoto0870.com/companysearch...

I am sorry to have to send what I know will be a disappointing reply. If
you remain dissatisfied you may now ask the Information Commissioner to
review our handling of your request. He can be contacted at the
Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow,
Cheshire SK9 2AF.

Yours sincerely

John Sharpe

Central Policy

Freedom of Information Team

HM Revenue & Customs

Room 4/52

100 Parliament Street

London

SW1A 2BG

 

Fax 020 7147 0666

[4][email address]

The information in this e-mail and any attachments is confidential and may
be subject to legal professional privilege. Unless you are the intended
recipient or his/her representative you are not authorised to, and must
not, read, copy, distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it.
If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender
immediately.

HM Revenue & Customs computer systems will be monitored and communications
carried on them recorded, to secure the effective operation of the system
and for lawful purposes.

The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs are not liable for any
personal views of the sender.

This e-mail may have been intercepted and its information altered.

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

References

Visible links
1. http://search2.hmrc.gov.uk/kbroker/hmrc/...
2. http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ge...
3. http://www.saynoto0870.com/companysearch...
4. mailto:[email address]

Link to this

From: John Cross

2 November 2009

Dear Sirs

In light of your recent email I am narrowing my request to the
geographic and non-geographic phone numbers for 'Tax Offices for
Individual tax enquiries'

Yours sincerely,

John Cross

Link to this

From: Request, FOI (Security Cen Pol FOI )
HM Revenue and Customs

3 November 2009


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+------------------------------------------------------------------------+
| | |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| |-------------------------|
| |Freedom of Information & |
| | |
| |Data Protection Act Team |
| | |
| |Room 1C/25 |
| | |
| |100 Parliament Street |
| | |
| |London |
| | |
| |SW1A 2BQ |
|----------------------------------------------+-------------------------|
| | | |
| | |-------------------------|
| | |Tel 020 7147 0406 |
| | | |
| |Mr J Cross |Fax 020 7147 0666 |
| | | |
| |BY E-mail | |
| | | |
| |[FOI #17980 email] | |
| | |-------------------------|
| | | |
| | | |
| | |www.hmrc.gov.uk |
|---+------------------------------------------+-------------------------|
| | | |
|---+------------------------------------------+-------------------------|
| | Date |03/11/2009 | |
|---+-------------------+----------------------+-------------------------|
| |Our Ref |FOI 2378/09 | |
|---+-------------------+----------------------+-------------------------|
| |Your Ref | | |
|----------------------------------------------+-------------------------|
| | |
+------------------------------------------------------------------------+

Dear Mr Cross,

Freedom of Information Act 2000

Thank you for your letter of 2 November 2009, regarding HMRC geographic
and non-geographic phone numbers. Your request was received at HMRC on 2
November 2009 and I am dealing with it under the terms of the Freedom of
Information Act 2000.

HMRC will provide information in response to a request free of
charge. However, HMRC may ask you to pay our costs where there is lot of
information involved, for example replies in excess of 250 sheets of
photocopying. Whenever we contemplate charging we will provide full
details of the charges and payment will be required before we send the
response.

If you have any queries about this letter, please contact me. Please
remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Yours sincerely

Tony High

Freedom of Information Act Team

The information in this e-mail and any attachments is confidential and may
be subject to legal professional privilege. Unless you are the intended
recipient or his/her representative you are not authorised to, and must
not, read, copy, distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it.
If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender
immediately.

HM Revenue & Customs computer systems will be monitored and communications
carried on them recorded, to secure the effective operation of the system
and for lawful purposes.

The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs are not liable for any
personal views of the sender.

This e-mail may have been intercepted and its information altered.

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

Link to this

From: Hopkins, Andy (CustCON Contact Cntrs)
HM Revenue and Customs

27 November 2009


Attachment Cross 2378 09.pdf
45K Download View as HTML


Hello John

Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. The
response form HMRC is attached.

<<Cross 2378-09.pdf>>

thanks
Andy Hopkins

The information in this e-mail and any attachments is confidential and may
be subject to legal professional privilege. Unless you are the intended
recipient or his/her representative you are not authorised to, and must
not, read, copy, distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it.
If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender
immediately.

HM Revenue & Customs computer systems will be monitored and communications
carried on them recorded, to secure the effective operation of the system
and for lawful purposes.

The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs are not liable for any
personal views of the sender.

This e-mail may have been intercepted and its information altered.

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

Link to this

From: John Cross

28 November 2009

Dear Mr Hopkins,
In your last email you suggest that HMRC intends to rely on the
Section 21 exemption:

"Under section 21 of the Act, we are not required to provide
information in response to a request if it is already reasonably
accessible to you."

I am requesting an internal review because the Section 21 exemption
is not engaged in this case, for two reasons:

(1) Section 21(3) states that:

"For the purposes of subsection (1), information which is held by a
public authority and does not fall within subsection (2)(b) is not
to be regarded as reasonably accessible to the applicant merely
because the information is available from the public authority
itself on request, unless the information is made available in
accordance with the authority’s publication scheme and any payment
required is specified in, or determined in accordance with, the
scheme."

The phone numbers that can be obtained using the locator tool are
obtained by entering data into a form indicating the information
which the user of the tool. This request is then sent to HMRC and
answered automatically by HMRC's software and hardware. In short
the information is only available on request from HMRC, albeit that
HMRC's equipment is set up to respond automatically to such
queries, but this is not referred to in the publication scheme thus
the exemption is not engaged.

(2) The information I requested is not reasonably accessible to me
by other means. The only way to be sure I had got a complete data
set would be enter every single UK post code in turn and note the
results.

There are somewhere in the region of 1,762,464 live postcodes for
the UK.(source: National Statistics Postcode Directory November
2006 Version Notes
http://www.statistics.gov.uk/geography/d...)

I calculate that by manually testing one postcode every two seconds
it would take me more than 40 days to test all the postcodes even
if I worked 24 hours a day and seven days a week with no breaks.
This cannot be considered reasonably accessible.

An argument could be made that it might be possible for me to
automate the task of using the locator tool using a screen scraper.
My own computer skills are not sufficient to write such a programme
but even if they were making in the region of 1.7 million queries
through the HMRC website could be regarded as a breach of the terms
of service as it could seriously inconvenience other users:

"You agree to use this site ... in a manner that does not infringe
the rights of, or restrict or inhibit the use and enjoyment of this
site by any third party"
[http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/terms/]

Searching using a list of towns would leave me uncertain as to
whether I had the complete data set I had requested. I noticed when
I searched for 'Birmingham' which is normally considered a city
rather than a town that a tax office was returned.

Please therefore provide the information I have requested in a form
I can reasonably access.

Yours sincerely,

John Cross

Link to this

John Cross left an annotation (29 November 2009)

Link to this

From: Chance, Teresa (CenPOL)
HM Revenue and Customs

7 December 2009

Dear Mr Cross,

Your review request is receiving attention and you should receive a
response by 29/12/09. You will be kept informed in the event of any
delay.

Yours sincerely

Teresa Chance

The information in this e-mail and any attachments is confidential and may
be subject to legal professional privilege. Unless you are the intended
recipient or his/her representative you are not authorised to, and must
not, read, copy, distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it.
If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender
immediately.

HM Revenue & Customs computer systems will be monitored and communications
carried on them recorded, to secure the effective operation of the system
and for lawful purposes.

The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs are not liable for any
personal views of the sender.

This e-mail may have been intercepted and its information altered.

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

Link to this

From: Chance, Teresa (CenPOL)
HM Revenue and Customs

4 January 2010

Dear Mr Cross,

Your review request is still receiving attention. I have now been advised
that the review should be completed by 20 January 2010.

I apologise for the delay.

Yours sincerely

Teresa Chance

show quoted sections

Link to this

From: John Cross

4 January 2010

Dear Teresa,
Thank you for your email I look forward to hearing the outcome of
the review.

Yours sincerely,

John Cross

Link to this

From: Chance, Teresa (CenPOL)
HM Revenue and Customs

20 January 2010


Attachment J Cross Internal Review.pdf
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Attachment 0845 International Numbers.pdf
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Dear Mr Cross,

Please find attached HMRC's internal review of the handling of your
information request.

Yours sincerely

Teresa Chance

show quoted sections

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