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HMRC internal manual

Claimant Compliance Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Particular Aspects: Work & Hours - Self-employed Customers - Documents Received

The documents you receive will be of varying standards from headed invoices to hand written ones, both are acceptable. The invoices may be written in the same handwriting, this would be expected behaviour as it would be normal practice for the customer to complete every invoice themselves.

However all information contained on the invoices or diaries can be questioned for credibility. Below is an example of an invoice along with examples of questions this could raise to establish if the information is credible

From: Mr Smith

123 The Mews

London To: Mrs White

14 The Crescent

  From 31/08/2009 to 25/09/2009

Painting Service

Anfield Site

3 Kitchens

13 Living rooms

28 bedrooms

Rate £5.80

Hours 68

Less Materials deducted £394.00



  • in the ‘To’ box this could be an employer or customer. From our HMRC systems we can determine if the address exists and whether the names person or company is associated with that address
  • the period of the invoices will give you the information to decide whether the work is continual
  • the address of where the work is being done. Is this geographically possible if the customer has no transport
  • rate of pay. Is this credible for the type of work
  • hours worked. Is it credible that someone could paint 44 rooms in 68 hours? If the number of rooms painted came form the same address, is it credible to have that many rooms at an address
  • material, if a customer was self employed then it would be useful for them to have to purchase their own equipment and materials, so why would it be nil.

Many of the above points may not in themselves be enough to make a decision, see CCM6800 but they are points that we can ask for clarification from the customer. If the answers you receive do not seem credible then it would be enough to make a decision

Note: Although we can use our systems to confirm whether clients/addresses/companies exist we can not then contact them for further information. As these are not classed as employers then we have no third party powers.