Customised repayment claim forms submitted by an agent on behalf of a client must meet HM Revenue and Customs' (HMRC) standards.
Customised repayment claim forms
Agents can use their own customised form to submit a tax repayment claim on behalf of a client rather than HMRC forms. These can be a combination of relevant documents, such as agent authorisation and repayment claims, and may include agreements to terms and conditions or letters of assignment.
You must ensure your forms meet certain standards of formatting and information. If they don’t, HMRC will consider them invalid and return them unprocessed.
However, HMRC will continue to accept customised forms that don’t meet these standards if they were both:
- printed and provided to customers before 26 August 2015
- received by HMRC before 5 April 2016
Contract and terms
The contract and terms (including fees) between you and the customer should be a separate agreement from the repayment claim.
If you want to combine them in one document there must be a separate section for the contract and terms. The customer must acknowledge the contract and terms section by signature and the repayment claim and assignment with another signature.
You need to make it clear HMRC doesn’t endorse, approve or is responsible for the terms of agreement. There must be specific words before the signature of that separate section to the effect that:
This contract is between [agent] and you only. HMRC has not seen the terms of the contract and the inclusion of these terms as part of your repayment claim should not be taken to imply that HMRC endorses or otherwise approves of those terms.
Letters of assignment and nominations
A customer can choose to have their repayment made to an agent by completing either a nomination or a letter of assignment.
When a nomination is completed, the individual taxpayer remains the person legally entitled to the repayment and may withdraw the nomination if they choose to do so. When a letter of assignment is completed, the assignee becomes the person legally entitled to the repayment and this can only be cancelled with the agreement of both the person assigning the repayment and the person assigned to receive the repayment.
HMRC must be satisfied of both the customer’s identity and their intention when a repayment is assigned to someone else.
The assignment wording should be clear, unambiguous, unconditional and must specify the tax years involved. Don’t include future tax years as taxes must have actually been overpaid to be assigned. You can only assign for the current year for an in-year repayment claim. You mustn’t:
- include any statements around agreement to terms and conditions or fees in the wording of the assignment
- put the assignment wording in small print or after your customer’s signature