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HMRC internal manual

Claimant Compliance Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Examinations: Post-award penalty cases: Overview

Potential post-award examinations will be sent to the manager who then allocates them to a Compliance Officer. The details are entered on the TCW or CCMIS.

Your first step is to decide whether a penalty might be appropriate, see CCM4410 

  • if a penalty might be appropriate continue as shown below.
  • if a penalty is not appropriate , see CCM4415.

You need to send the customer a letter, see CCM4815. This formally opens your examination and tells the customer what information you need. The letter also tells them we will be charging a penalty and asks them to tell us anything they want us to take into account.

You then need to consider any response:

  • if the customer provides the information you asked for, you will make a decision to either

    • take no further action - see CCM4820 
    • Adjust the award - see CCM4830 
    • Extend the scope of the examination - see CCM4835 

If the customer does not reply within the time you gave them you will send a further request and if they still do not reply you will suspend the award. If they still do not supply the information you will terminate the award.

Once you have made your decision:

  • you should write to the customer explaining your decision and issue any notice setting out your decision and telling them your examination is now closed. The customer has a right to appeal against your decision. You will also need to take action to recover the penalty.

If the customer appeals you will need to consider whether you can revise your decision to settle the appeal by agreement, see CCM4860. If you cannot revise your decision then the case may need to be heard by the Independent Appeals Tribunal.

There is no right of appeal against the suspension of an award.