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HMRC internal manual

Appeals reviews and tribunals guidance

First-tier and Upper Tribunals: Preparing for tribunal: Preparation of the case

The tribunals caseworker will be responsible for preparing the case for hearing at the tribunal. This will include

  • making sure there is a thorough review of the case papers including any review papers
  • setting out the facts
  • checking that the issue in dispute is being properly litigated i.e. that the appeal is properly made and the criteria for the particular appeal are satisfied
  • checking the completeness and accuracy of calculations
  • seeking appropriate advice from accountancy, technical or other specialists (note that cases should be submitted to specialists based on the complexity of the case and the nature of the issues raised by the case and not the category the Tribunals Service might allocate the case to)
  • checking that no unlawful enquiry was made, such as if there was a failure to issue a S9A TMA 1970 notice
  • checking that actions were taken within any specified time limit
  • checking that confidentiality has not been breached
  • checking that any surveillance carried out has been properly authorised
  • checking that there is a valid appeal against the decision
  • obtaining evidence if necessary from third parties
  • considering whether an expert witness is required
  • obtaining witness statements
  • preparation of a statement of case, see ARTG8370 and ARTG8390 
  • liaising with the tribunal and making sure that any directions are complied with.