More than one million tax credit customers completed their renewal using the new online tools ahead of the 31 July deadline for the first time, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) revealed today.



Proving increasingly popular with its handy tips and helpful advice, the department’s online services handled 43% of all renewals by supporting 170,000 customers through the process via webchat, and saw more than 35,000 customers choose to submit their return through the new tax credit renewals app. Here’s what other tax credit renewal customers had to say:

· “I have never used this before and found it very easy. Great way to renew.”
· “It's less stress for everyone, especially when you have children at home.”
· “This service is quick, efficient and effective! Well done HMRC.”

The services are so intuitive they even helped bring down demand on the phone lines by around 20% in the run up to deadline day, with only 180,000 renewal-related calls received in the last week of July, compared to 222,000 the previous year.

A new trial SMS service, messaging customers to reassure them their renewal had been received and was being progressed, also proved to be a success, with 85% of recipients saying it gave them reassurance their renewal was being handled and stopped them calling the helplines.

Angela MacDonald, HMRC’s Director General for Customers Services, said:
“It’s fantastic to see how many enthusiastic and positive responses our online tax credit renewal services have received. We know renewing can be a chore and no two lives are the same, that’s why we’re dedicated to transforming HMRC into an organisation fit for the future, by developing new ways for our customers to do this that suit them and their lifestyles.”

Anyone who has not renewed will have their payments stopped and may have to pay back any payments they’ve received since April. They must contact HMRC immediately – either online at GOV.UK or over the phone (0345 300 3900).