The message 'Root element is missing' can most likely occur when an XML data file has been corrupted on your system.
While we would not know what has specifically happened on your computer, some of the common reasons for this error and data files corruptions are:
A computer may have been switched off or crashed while the software was open and it has corrupted the data files.
XML data files were manually opened using another program such as Notepad, Microsoft Word, etc. and saved the file with or without modifications.
One of the suggestions below will get you past the issue.
You must consider the suggestion in the order they have been listed.
Solution 1 (This is recommended solution):
If you have taken data backups from the software, restore the affected Partnership record data. Details are provided in 'Backup and Restore' section of the software user guide.
Delete record for the affected Partnership and then create it again.
Please note you will lose all the data you have entered so far and the process is irreversible. Once you delete the client record, all history of that client will be removed.
Records should NOT be deleted if returns for that client/Partnership have been processed and submitted.
To delete a Partnership record:
- Log into the software
- The client/Partnership record that you want to delete should not be open. Select 'File' > 'Close' to close any open records.
- Select 'Tools' - 'Security' - 'User Accounts'.
- In 'User Settings' screen - 'Select User', highlight the 'User name' (Record) that you want to delete and click 'Delete'. (if the Delete button is greyed out refer to suggestion below).
- Once you have deleted the record, create it again.
This is a suggestion to use if the 'Delete' button referred to in Solution 2 is permanently greyed out for the record that is corrupted.
If you have not used up all the licensed Partnership records and are not likely to need the extra record, you can create a duplicate record for the same Partnership.
- 'Partnership tax ref' for each record must be unique. So when creating the duplicate record, change the 'Partnership tax ref' for the 2nd record so that it is slightly different from the original record. Click OK through the message "HMRC require a correct Unique Tax Reference to be provided on all returns..."
- Once record has been created, open it. On 'Partnership Information' screen, enter the correct 'Partnership tax ref'. Click OK through the message "Partnership tax ref. already exists for another business, this could result in submission..."
- Re-enter all the tax return details and submit.
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