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HMRC internal manual

Claimant Compliance Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Opening and Working Enquiries: Evidence of delivery (receipt) date

If a notice is not delivered (received by the customer), it may be some time before the customer provides you with evidence of non - delivery. They may, for example, not contact you until some weeks later, when they receive your formal notice for information, but know nothing about the enquiry. Where you accept their evidence that they did not receive the notice, you can only issue another notice if you are still within the time limit for doing so.

You will have evidence of the delivery date if a notice was given by hand or sent by recorded delivery. In all other cases, you should follow the guidelines for postal delivery at CCM12120, unless the customer(s) provides evidence of a specific date, or states they never received the notice. Where you do not accept the customer’s evidence you should tell them why and continue with your enquiry. If you subsequently issue a formal information notice (S19(2)), and the customer fails to provide the information required, you may need to consider taking penalty action. The customer(s) will have the right of appeal against any decision to charge a penalty, and may then contend that the formal notice is invalid because they did not receive an enquiry notice, or did not receive it within the time limit.