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HMRC internal manual

Appeals reviews and tribunals guidance

Reviews and appeals for direct taxes: Payment of tax pending the outcome of an appeal: Disputed postponement applications

If the customer applies for postponement of tax and the decision maker does not agree the application, they should suggest an appropriate alternative amount (if any) and ask the customer for their written agreement.

If the customer then puts forward alternative acceptable counter-proposals the decision maker should write and confirm they accept their proposals. The decision maker can negotiate with the customer to agree an acceptable amount of tax to be postponed. Having reached agreement the decision maker should confirm the amount to be postponed in writing.

But if the decision maker cannot agree with the customer how much tax should be postponed, they must write to the customer and formally notify our decision on the postponement application and the amount of tax we consider payable.

The letter should also explain that

  • if the customer agrees with the amount notified they should pay the tax shown as payable in the determination
  • if they disagree with the amount notified the customer should write to the tribunal within 30 days of the notification to ask it to decide the amount of tax to be postponed.The letter should also remind the customer that interest will be payable if the amount postponed turns out to be due, or if it turns out they have paid too much HMRC will pay interest on the amount overpaid.

A review of HMRC’s decision on postponement is not available, as there is no right of appeal against HMRC’s decision on a postponement application; reviews of decisions are only available where an HMRC decision is appealable, see ARTG2160.