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HMRC internal manual

Alcohol Wholesaler Registration Scheme

Regulatory penalties: applying penalties - is the contravention liable to a penalty?

The WCLR 2015 specify the following requirements once a business has been approved for AWRS:

  1. Requirement to notify changes to the information contained in the letter of registration or other information prescribed in the public notice, for example, changes to directors, partners and so on.

  2. Requirement to notify an intention to cease trading as an alcohol wholesaler no later than 30 days before the day on which the activity will cease.

These two requirements are important to make sure the online database is accurate and up to date.  This database will be the primary tool for buyers to use to confirm the approval status of their suppliers.

  1. Making their AWRS URN available to customers and suppliers and including on sales invoices.

They can include on other forms of documentation if they wish but the primary sales document must bear the AWRS URN.

  1. Other conditions and restrictions laid down in the public notice including:
  • a requirement to carry out due diligence checks on their supply chain
  • only carrying out a controlled activity from premises that have been approved by HMRC
  • notifying changes to registration details within time limits specified in Excise Notice 2002.

5. Record-keeping including:

  • keeping and making available the records specified in Excise Notice 2002
  • the timing of making a record
  • preservation of such records for a period of six years or such lesser period HMRC may allow.

AWRS group approvals are subject to the same conditions and restrictions of the scheme as a single approval. Once approved, they are also required to notify:

  • changes to the group membership, for example, adding or removing subsidiary companies
  • changes to the representative member
  • cancelling a group registration
  • confirming acceptance of any changes from all the members of the group.

This list is not exhaustive.  You should familiarise yourself with the additional conditions and restrictions laid down in Excise Notice 2002 alongside this guidance.