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HMRC internal manual

Company Taxation Manual

Corporation Tax self assessment (CTSA): group relief - general: time limit - enquiry cases

When you open an enquiry into a company tax return, the time limit is extended until 30 days after the enquiry is concluded by FA98/SCH18/PARA74 (1)(b) - (d).

A company can make or withdraw a group relief claim up to the last of the following dates:

  • 30 days after the issue of a notice of completion of the enquiry(see example 1)
  • when you amend a return following an enquiry, 30 days after the notice of amendment is issued (see example 2)
  • when there is an appeal against your amendment to the return, 30 days after the date the appeal is finally determined (see example 3).

Example 1

  • Company B makes up its accounts to 31 December each year.
  • On 21 January 2008, the company receives a notice to deliver specifying the period 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2007.
  • Company B submits its return for the year ended 31 December 2007 in November 2008 (before the filing date).
  • You open an enquiry into the return.
  • You issue a closure notice under FA98/SCH18/PARA32 on 13 May 2010 completing the enquiry.

Under FA98/Sch18/PARA74 (1)(b) Company B has until 13 June 2010, 30 days following the completion of the enquiry, to make and withdraw group relief claims.

Example 2

  • You enquire into Company C’s return for the accounting period ended 30 June 2000.
  • You issue a closure notice on 14 October 2012 amending the return under FA98/SCH18/PARA34(2).

Under FA98/SCH18/PARA74 (1)(c) Company C has until 14 November 2012 to make and withdraw group relief claims, 30 days after notice of the amendment was issued.

Example 3

  • Company D’s return for its accounting period ended 31 December 2007 gives rise to a dispute about a substantial point of law.
  • The House of Lords hear Company D’s appeal against the Revenue amendment of its return (Paragraph 34 (2)).
  • The House of Lords give their decision on 19 April 2012.

Company D has until 19 May 2012 to make and withdraw group relief claims, 30 days after the date on which its appeal was finally determined (Paragraph 74 (1)(d)).

Paragraph 74 (3) relaxes the time limits that otherwise apply to the amendment of a return when a company makes or withdraws a claim for group relief within the time allowed under Paragraph 74 (1).

Some of the dates shown in the examples are later than the normal dates for company amendment of a return under FA98/SCH18/PARA15. This is because Paragraph 74 (1) over-rides those time limits for the purpose only of making or withdrawing group relief claims.

However, Paragraph 74 (4), does not extend the time limit when the enquiry is restricted to a previous amendment of a return making or withdrawing a claim for group relief.

An enquiry is restricted to an amendment if:

  • the scope of the enquiry is limited as mentioned in Paragraph FA98/SCH18/PARA25 (2), because you issue the notice of enquiry after the time that you may open an enquiry into the whole of the return and
  • the amendment giving rise to the enquiry consisted of the making or withdrawing of a group relief claim.