This part of GOV.UK is being rebuilt – find out what beta means

HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

Information & Inspection Powers: Information notices: Identification notice: Conditions

An authorised officer must check whether four conditions are satisfied before they can issue an identification notice to a third party.

Condition A

The information must be reasonably required by the officer for the purpose of checking the tax position of the person, and that tax position must be for a tax to which Schedule 36 applies, see CH21540. The officer must therefore know what tax is being checked even if the tax position that is being checked is only a risk.

See CH21620 for guidance on what we mean by ‘reasonably required’. Additionally, where an overseas tax authority has requested information and told us the tax position they are investigating, that is normally enough to make the information reasonably required.

Condition B

The officer

  • does not know the identity of the person, but
  • holds information that can be used to identify the person.

Condition C

The officer must have reason to believe that

  • the third party will be able to ascertain the person’s identity from the information held by the officer, and
  • the third party obtained the relevant information about the person in the course of carrying on a business.

Condition D

The person’s identity cannot be readily ascertained by other means from information that is held by the officer.

See CH227500 for operational guidance on identification notices. If you wish to issue an identification notice to obtain the identity of more than one person, or a class of persons, you must refer the case to Tax Administration, Litigation and Advice (TALA) before you issue the notice.