HMRC Tax Robot Calculations Made Legal

Published / Last Updated on 13/11/2019

Legislation will be introduced by the Government (assuming they are re-elected) that will mean a tax calculation performed by a computer will have the same power in law as one calculated by a human.

The decision comes after a number of test cases against HMRC were taken to court suggesting that the tax demand they received was not valid as it was calculated by a computer.   

Long standing UK tax law principles mean that any tax demand must be calculated by a human, but over the years HMRC has increasingly used technology to read, scan, assess and issue tax demands to individuals.

The new laws will mean any taxpayer that appeals a ruling based on a verdict issued by a computer will have their appeal rejected.


Technology has moved on and we now all use it in most parts of our lives.  It is only logical that HMRC use the same to make tax collection more efficient.  The issue will always be ensuring that the computer coding is accurate.

Big Brother is definitely on its way.  Many of us now have Personal Tax Accounts and sooner or later with 'open banking' APIs, HMRC will be able to access your bank accounts, your earnings, your investment income and more to automate tax calculation and collection.


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