HMRC updates guidance on APN representations

HMRC has updated its factsheet on tax avoidance and accelerated payment notices (APNs), first published in August 2014, providing more detail on what taxpayers should do if they disagree with an APN

The section on how to make representations highlights that there is no right of appeal against an APN. However, taxpayers can make a representation to HMRC if they believe that the conditions for issuing the notice have not been met and/or if they believe the amount shown in the notice is incorrect.

If a taxpayer makes a representation on this basis, they will need to inform HMRC of what they think the correct amount is and why. Representations must be in writing, and must reach HMRC no later than 90 calendar days from the date that the taxpayer received the notice.

A taxpayer cannot make representations once the 90 calendar days has passed. HMRC’s factsheet points out that this means, once the department has information an individual of what the findings are, that person will not be able to make any additional representations if the 90 calendar days has already passed by then.

The factsheet therefore underlines the need for taxpayers to provide all relevant information when making representations to HMRC.

It also states that if someone makes representations, they cannot ask for postponement of the amount shown in the APN. However, if they make representations before the date the payment is due, and HMRC does not withdraw the notice, the deadline for paying may be extended.

Payment will be due on whichever is the later of the due date shown in the APN, or 30 days after the date on which a taxpayer receives HMRC’s decision about the representations made.  If the deadline for paying is extended, any penalties for paying late will apply from the extended deadline date.

The factsheet warns that anyone who is a member of a partnership is able to make representations regarding their own partner payment notice, but is not able to make representations on behalf of any of the other partners, or on behalf of the partnership as a whole.

Compliance checks: tax avoidance schemes - accelerated payments CC/FS24 is here.

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