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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

Information & Inspection Powers: Conditions and safeguards: Restrictions: Tax advice: approval for an information notice including tax advice

You must secure approval from an Authorised Officer before you can issue an information notice requiring tax advice.

To do this, you must complete the appropriate template and send it to the Business Unit Expert (BUE). The BUE will consider the template and may request papers or information from you if necessary.

If you don’t know who your BUE is you should contact (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000) who will tell you who to approach.

Where the BUE does not consider the case appropriate for further action, they will return the case as not approved and explain why or what needs to be done to progress this part of the enquiry.

Where the BUE does consider that further action is appropriate, they will submit the matter to a specified Authorised Officer for approval to issue an information notice for the tax advice documents.

The Authorised Officer for these purposes will be

  • minimum Grade 6 in FIS, LB, CAD and RIS
  • nominated Grade 6 in other business areas or Central Policy, Tax Administration Advice as appropriate.

If the Grade 6 approves, you may issue an information notice to the person (not the advisor because most tax advice papers are protected in the hands of the advisor by FA08/SCH36 (25 - 27)).

In most circumstances you will give a taxpayer information notice without tribunal approval. However, you can ask the tribunal to approve a taxpayer information notice, see CH24120. If you want to do this, include in the template to the Authorised Officer a submission explaining why you wish to replace the taxpayer right of appeal with the opportunity to make representations before the tribunal for approval of the taxpayer information notice.