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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Debt and return pursuit: PAYE: in-year process: quantification: wages records not available

You won’t always have to produce your HMRC ID card or make reference to the Regulations in order for the employer to let you see the wages records. But there may be occasions where neither persuasion nor production of the official documents has any effect.

If the wage records are not produced there could be three reasons

  1. the employer simply refuses to produce them
  2. they need help and education on payroll matters
  3. intended negligence.

If the employer refuses to let you see the records, you must, firstly check that the employer is not

  • having difficulties with paying
  • is worried about the outcome of the quantification.

If this is the case, give assistance with a possible time to pay or by explaining the process to them fully.

If they still refuse to let you inspect the records

  • leave and report the facts to your manager
  • note IDMS that the quantification has been unsuccessful and that future quantifications may also be unsuccessful.

The manager must then report the facts to their manager, who should decide the next course of action, bearing the following legislation in mind.

  • Paragraph 1 of Schedule 36 of the Finance Act 2008 allows HRMC to obtain information and documents by making a written request to the employer. There is no right of appeal against this and failure to comply could lead to HMRC raising a penalty on the employer.
  • Paragraph 39 of Schedule 36 of the Finance Act 2008 enables HMRC to raise a penalty of £300 where there has been a failure to provide the information or documents requested but not where there is a reasonable excuse for the failure. This can be followed 30 days after by daily penalties for continued failure although we would not usually assess daily penalties for these cases.

In the rare cases where penalties are considered appropriate within DMB cases, they should be reviewed by an officer grade or above.

The officer should review the case to consider the most effective way to

  • establish the debt and
  • obtain the payment.

Only where there is no other recovery alternative should a standard penalty charge be authorised.