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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

How to do a compliance check: authorised officer: responsibilities of an authorised officer

As an authorised officer you are required to have expertise in the role and act as guardians of the highest standards.

Existing authorised officers are required to refresh their status and new authorised officers’ are reminded of the requirements that are needed to fulfil their role correctly.

It is necessary to ensure your expertise is maintained and regularly checked as follows:

New authorised officers from 16 May 2016

If an individual has become an authorised officer on or after 16 May 2016 they need to do the following training:

  • eLearning, code 0016555 (6 hours)
  • face to face learning, code 0017091a (3 hours)
  • knowledge check, code 0017091b (30 minutes).

On the first three occasions they use their powers as an authorised officer, their decision is to be reviewed by an experienced authorised officer.

Individuals can check their learning history to see if they have done the above learning.

Authorised officers in place before 16 May 2016

Authorised officers in place before 16 May 2016 should have undertaken and passed the knowledge check, code 0017091b (30 minutes) by 31 March 2018. On the next three occasions they use their powers as an authorised officer, their decision must be reviewed by an experienced authorised officer.

Before taking the knowledge check, authorised officers should consider with their manager whether they would benefit from undertaking either or both of:

  • eLearning, code 0016555 (6 hours)
  • face to face learning, code 0017091a (3 hours).

Authorised officers who have left or leave and return to the role

Individuals who return to the authorised officer role after a break of 12 months or more, it is recommended they undertake:

  • eLearning, code 0016555 (6 hours)
  • face to face learning, code 0017091a (3 hours).

Individuals must also undertake and pass the knowledge check, code 0017091b (30 minutes). Then on the first three occasions they use their powers as an authorised officer, their decision must be reviewed by an experienced authorised officer.

Refreshing Knowledge

Every 3 years, an authorised officer is required to undertake and pass the knowledge check, code 0017091b (30 minutes). Then on the next three occasions they use their powers as an authorised officer, their decision is to be reviewed by an experienced authorised officer.

Before taking the knowledge check, authorised officers should consider with their manager whether they would benefit from undertaking either or both of:

  • eLearning, code 0016555 (6 hours)
  • face to face learning, code 0017091a (3 hours).
Knowledge check 0017091b

The pass mark for the knowledge check is 70% and only two attempts allowed within 3 months.  If the check is failed twice by an existing authorised officer, the officer’s name must be removed from the list of ‘Authorised Officers’ until the check is passed.  The officer’s manager must then discuss whether this is an appropriate role with the officer.