Closing the Examination: Appeals
Formal notices of the revised decision will be sent to the customer(s) who will have the right of appeal against your decision to amend the award even if they have previously agreed the figures with you. The appeal right does not take effect from the date of your letter but from the date the formal decision is made by inputting the relevant information in the system (i.e. when the revised output is issued to the customer(s).
All appeals must be resolved either by:
- agreement between the customer(s) and yourself under Section 54 TMA 1970, or
- withdrawal of the appeal by the customer, or
- referral to the independent appeal tribunal
You should attempt wherever possible to come to an agreement with the customer(s) including asking them to agree to withdraw their appeal rather than referring it to the independent appeal tribunal.
If an appeal is made against your decision you should review the grounds of the appeal carefully to decide if you can revise your decision. If so, you can write to the customer(s) with revised figures and record your agreement under Section 54 TMA 1970 on form TC622 - See The Appeals Guide for more details. It is essential for you to use this form so that the appeal is properly settled. It may be appropriate to agree the customer(s)’s figures if:
- the customer(s) indicate that they would like the award to be revised based on their estimate of current year income, or
- they have notified a change of circumstances which was not reflected in your decision, or
- you had overlooked something in the previous decision.
If you receive an appeal from a customer who agreed your revised figures during previous correspondence you should write reminding them of their earlier agreement and inviting them to withdraw their appeal using TC676. You should carefully consider any further explanations they provide, including any claim to have their award based on estimated current year income, to decide whether it would be appropriate to revise your decision. If it is appropriate to revise your decision you will enter into a Section 54 TMA agreement.
The time limit for making appeals is 30 days from the date of the formal revised decision, but you should normally allow a little longer for any appeal to reach you before closing your records. If you do not receive an appeal once 40 days have passed then unless you have any reason to imagine that a late appeal will be made you will need to make the necessary entries on TCW (see TCW guidance).
Where you have been able to settle the appeal by agreement you must also keep the customer advised of the position regarding any overpayment. Having received further information you might now have been able to agree the claim in which case there will be no overpayment, but the customer might now have accepted your conclusions or you might have agreed to a different adjustment to the claim.
For appeals against a penalty please see CCM10385.