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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

HM Revenue & Customs
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Information & Inspection Powers: Penalties: What is the penalty: Failure, obstruction, concealment etc: Tax-related penalty

The Upper Tribunal can impose a tax-related penalty where a person

  • fails to comply with an information notice (including concealing, destroying or otherwise disposing of a document), or
  • deliberately obstructs an inspection

and that failure continues after an initial penalty has been imposed.

An application for a tax-related penalty will only be considered in the most serious cases where the tax at risk because of the failure or obstruction is substantial.

A tax-related penalty is in addition to the initial penalty and any daily penalties. In certain circumstances it may be appropriate to proceed with a tax-related penalty instead of daily or increased daily penalties.

Authority to seek a tax-related penalty is by application to the Upper Tribunal within 12 months beginning with the appropriate date, see CH26860. The application must be made by an authorised officer, see CH21720.

The amount of the penalty is decided by the Upper Tribunal based on the amount of tax at risk.

HMRC must notify the person of the penalty if the Tribunal decides that a tax-related penalty is payable.

If you think that a tax-related penalty should be imposed you must discuss the case with your manager and then make a report to Central Policy, Tax Administration Advice (TAA) using IT05 found in SEES Forms and Letters before making the application to the upper tribunal.

Operational guidance on tax-related penalties is at CH270400.