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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Operational Guidance

HM Revenue & Customs
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Supporting Guidance: employer compliance: guidance by subject: settlement: written confirmation of advice

If you do not find anything wrong during your compliance check it should be made clear in your letter that your comment is based on the records reviewed and you should not give the impression that all records were satisfactory.

For example: In an aspect case where the records reviewed were limited to the particular risk.

Where the employer or contractor has been given oral advice regarding the correct operation of PAYE, NICs or CIS for the future, confirmation must be issued in writing.

Written confirmation

  • makes sure the employer or contractor is clear about the correct procedures to be followed
  • may be used as evidence if it is later found that the employer or contractor has not followed those procedures.

A letter confirming the correct procedures must

  • be issued as soon as possible after the advice was given and must

    • state when and to whom the advice was given
    • list each topic on which advice was given and what that advice was
    • where possible make reference to the appropriate sections or paragraphs in the relevant Employer Help book
  • include a line advising that ‘any adjustments made to an employee’s pay, including amounts included in a settlement, may affect the level of their tax credit or universal credit award and they may wish to tell the affected employees’
  • make sure the letter does not include any references that may prejudice future actions.