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HMRC internal manual

Claimant Compliance Manual

Opening and Working Enquiries: SA enquiry concluded by contract settlement

An SA enquiry is closed when a completion notice is issued. Where an SA enquiry is concluded by a contract settlement, no completion notice is normally issued. Where an SA enquiry has been closed by contract, and there is a consequential effect on the NTC entitlement, you should open the NTC enquiry as soon as possible, and in any event within 3 months of the date on which the letter accepting the taxpayer’s offer.


Winston is a self employed graphic designer, who has claimed and been awarded WTC for 2003/2004. He files his 2004 SA return on 30 January 2005, and an enquiry is opened into it on 18 November 2005. The enquiry into Winston’s SA return is closed (by issue of a completion notice) on 16 June 2006. The SA return only becomes final on that date, and the NTC enquiry window also remains open until 16 June 2006.

If the SA enquiry was concluded by a contract settlement, no completion notice would be issued. In that situation, you would have to open an NTC enquiry within three months of the letter accepting Winston’s offer in settlement.