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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

How to do a compliance check: information powers: rules that apply to all notices: notices to banks about their customers: introduction

Before giving a notice to a bank for information about one of its customers you should try to obtain the information from the person, if necessary by giving the person an information notice, see CH221000.

If the person does not have the documents, they may give you a mandate to approach a bank, see CH225160.

If the information required relates to the bank account of the person’s spouse or partner the issue of an information notice to the spouse or partner should be considered before making an approach to the bank, see CH207315.

HMRC have made a commitment to the British Bankers Association about the circumstances when we will issue a taxpayer approved third party notice to a bank, see CH23100. In all other cases you must obtain tribunal approval first. You must not make informal requests for information. See also CH232500.

A specimen Summary of Reasons letter, to give to the person whose tax position you are checking, is at CH232450. A Summary of Reasons letter is not issued in an excise compliance check.

If you intend to issue a tribunal approved information notice to a bank about one of its customers you will first need to issue an opportunity letter, see CH232300.