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HMRC internal manual

Claimant Compliance Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Closing the Examination: Adjustment needed to the claim and Penalties appropriate - Who will meet the settlement?

You will normally have had this in mind whilst you were working the examination but you need only reach a firm conclusion when you reach the settlement stage. Where a couple claim NTC they are jointly and severally liable for any overpayments. This means that if a Mr & Mrs Green have been overpaid £1500 we can pursue either of them or both of them until we get all of our money. The legislation also allows us to decide that each of them should pay a specified amount.

Who you ask to meet the settlement will depend on the circumstances of the case. You will need to consider whether your case involves:

  • a single customer
  • a couple who are no longer living together at the time you settle the examination
  • a couple where they were both aware of the incorrect claim or could reasonably have been expected to be aware of it
  • a couple where the only penalty relates to a failure to notify a change of circumstances
  • a couple where one of the partners is considered to be innocent of any fraud or neglect