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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

Charging penalties: authorisation: authorising penalties

To authorise PDACs you will need a password that can be obtained by contacting the Caseflow User Support Helpdesk. PDAC passwords attract the same security procedures as other HMRC systems and are personal to you. Passwords are linked to your computer and only need to be entered the first time you open a PDAC after which they are remembered by the system. You cannot authorise a PDAC that you have completed in a role as the caseworker.

To open the PDAC, save it from the email to a location on your computer. If the PDAC is located on a shared drive there is no need to create a copy. Double click the PDAC to open it, click the Manager Authorisation button and if asked, enter your password.

The PDAC records penalty decisions. The unpaid tax amounts shown as PLR in the PDAC must have been separately checked and authorised before you authorise any penalty decisions.

You will be asked on the Manager Check tab to authorise that:

  • sufficient questions have been asked and facts established to support a MDTRC decision
  • the caseworker educated the customer to prevent future errors
  • the relevant factsheets have been issued
  • sufficient evidence is given to support the behaviour decision
  • the behaviour decision is correct
  • the disclosure decisions are correct
  • the suspension decision is correct
  • the suspension conditions are SMART
  • the suspension period is appropriate
  • the draft Penalty Explanation Letter and its content is agreed.

If you are satisfied that the correct decisions have been made, and there is the evidence to support them, ‘authorise’ the PDAC on the Authorisation tab.

If you are not satisfied with the decisions made, or if there is more work needed or corrections to be made, ‘reject’ the PDAC.

Rejecting the PDAC unlocks the entries so that the caseworker can make amendments or you may choose to reject and lock the PDAC where a procedural error prevents HMRC from taking further action.

Explain to the caseworker the reason for your decision and, if appropriate what they need to do to get authorisation of their penalty decision, for example obtain more evidence of the behaviour that led to an inaccuracy.