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HMRC internal manual

Appeals reviews and tribunals guidance

First-tier and Upper Tribunals: Outcome of the tribunal proceedings: Action following the tribunal decision


When the decision maker receives a tribunal decision they should write to the customer to give effect to the tribunal’s decision where appropriate, for example a penalty notice. Forms for use for the more common applications HMRC make are available on SEES.

When writing to the customer following the tribunal decision the decision maker should include:

  • the date of the tribunal’s decision
  • the nature of the tribunal’s decision
  • what the customer is required to do and by when
  • the consequences if the customer does not comply with the notice
  • the customer’s right of appeal (where appropriate).

Where the application was ‘without notice’, see ARTG7530, the decision maker’s letter will contain details of the tribunal’s decision as well as the information above.

Further appeal by HMRC

When the tribunals caseworker (direct taxes, see ARTG8400) or Solicitor’s Office (ARTG8410) receives a tribunal decision, they should review the tribunal decision and update their records

Having reviewed the tribunal’s decision they will liaise with other interested parties in the case, such as policy, technical specialists and Solicitor’s Office in order to reach a consensus as to whether HMRC should accept the tribunal’s decision or pursue it further.

In doing so the tribunals caseworker must act in line with HMRC’s Litigation and Settlement Strategy.

Normally the tribunals caseworker will be treated as the case owner for the purpose of HMRC’S Litigation and Settlement Strategy, see ARTG8400.

Any case where it is likely that the decision of the First-tier Tribunal is to be appealed to the Upper Tribunal should be submitted to Solicitor’s Office immediately for consideration, if Solicitor’s Office has not already been involved.

All applications for permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal and ongoing litigation including to an appellate court, must be approved as follows;

Decisions about whether to bring or defend litigation at the Upper Tribunal - SCS 1

Decisions about whether to bring or defend litigation at the Court of Appeal - Director

Decisions about whether to bring or defend litigation at the Supreme Court - General

Counsel and Solicitor (currently Gill Aitken) and relevant Director