Certificate of residence for a company

One of my client companies needs a certificate of residence for a transaction they are undertaking in Romania and time is of the essence. I applied for a certificate and after a couple of weeks tried to chase it up. However, I was advised during the myriad of options on the telephone that if it was less than 15 working days since application HMRC will not even talk to me. Having waited the 15 days I rang and was told they were four weeks behind opening post for urgent matters such as for certificates of residence. Chasing again after four weeks had elapsed I was advised it was not quite four weeks and they had no record of the request.  Four days later HMRC telephoned to say the certificate had been issued that day. One week later I telephoned to find out where it was and was advised it was sent second class and I should allow 9 to 10 days for delivery.
Why when something is clearly urgent do they send it second class when they have already delayed the process by over four weeks? Will HMRC pay compensation if the deal falls through because of their dilatory response? And why 9 to 10 days, second class post at worst takes 4 to 5 days? Presumably having issued the certificate it takes HMRC 4 to 5 days to get it in the envelope and out of the door.
  • To update the post above two certificates were requested, one a certificate of residence and one saying that the company paid tax in the UK. The certificate of residence was eventually received as noted above but the other certificate did not arrive. This has been chased on numerous occasions and a request was made via the AAM who assured me the certificate had been issued on 5 October and if it had not arrived in 25 days, not a mistype he said 25 days, I could then chase it up. With a client breathing fire down my neck I ignored the 25 day rule and began to chase again after 10 days. Eventually I persuaded a very helpful lady at Euston to reissue the certificate and hand it to my client in person earlier this week.
    So from a very clear request sent on 10 August including the wording of the certificate required it has taken 77 days to issue certificates that were required urgently.
    In the meantime I have had quite a few letters from HMRC on other clients each of which give me 28 days to respond!