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

HMRC internal manual

Compliance Handbook

Agent operational guidance: poor agent behaviour: agent's behaviour, although legal, gives HMRC cause for concern: delaying the progress of a check

When you carry out a compliance check or other check involving an agent, you may find agents who

  • routinely appeal against every decision you make
  • refuse to deal with any business over the telephone
  • regularly arrange and then postpone appointments
  • fail to return telephone calls
  • make continual, unwarranted complaints.

Our customers have a statutory right of appeal against the majority of the decisions we make and this should not be regarded in any way as unreasonable behaviour. It might be the agent is trying to delay your check because

  • they have significant work pressures
  • their client wants the agent to behave in this way.

You can address most delay to the progress of your check by using SCH 36 FA08 powers, see CH20000 for details on use of information and inspection powers.