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HMRC internal manual

Claimant Compliance Manual

Undisclosed Partners: Recovery of Overpayment for cases opened before 17 May 2007 - Notifying the Customer

Where you have concluded that the customer has or had been living with a previously undisclosed partner you should explain:

  • your conclusion - see CCM15350 
  • the nature of their offence which will either be

    • they made an incorrect claim. They might have gone on to repeat this in the end of year declaration.
    • they failed to notify a change of circumstance. They might have gone on to make an incorrect end of year declaration.
  • the award will be terminated from the date the partner joined the household and all tax credits paid from that date will be overpaid.
  • they might be eligible to make a new claim either as a couple or as a single person if their partner is no longer living with them. In some cases it will not be necessary to give this advice because a new claim will already have been made.

In addition to the above points you will have to advise the customer that although the full overpayment is repayable to HMRC we might be able to waive part of this sum. The point at which you mention this will depend on the circumstances of the case. You might have mentioned this at a meeting with the customer in which case you can repeat it in your follow-up letter. Alternatively, you may feel the customer will appeal against your decision in which case it should only be mentioned when you are in a position to finalise the decision. Between these two extremes there will be other cases where following a meeting the customer has contacted you to say they now accept they were living with a partner. In these cases you should tell the customer about the possibility of waiving part of the overpayment once they accept your conclusion. There is no right of appeal against our decision under S28(1) to recover all or part of an overpayment.

Once you have revised the award you will be able to calculate the amount to be recovered - see CCM15520.