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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

From
HM Revenue & Customs
Updated
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Debt and return pursuit: tax credits: domestic violence cases

Introduction

If you receive information/evidence from a claimant about domestic violence, you should ensure that the action described below is carried out without delay to highlight the importance of the domestic violence aspect of the case.

Note: Although in a household breakdown case claimants are only responsible for 50% of the debt (DMBM555410) it is very important that, in any contact (by letter, telephone, personal call), you do not divulge any personal information, including the NINO, address, change of name of one claimant to their ex-partner.

Action to take

Domestic violence cases should be handled carefully and sympathetically.

When contact (telephone call, letter or personal call) is made by/with a claimant and they state that they are, or have been, a victim of domestic violence, you should ask for details and evidence such as whether

  • the police were involved
  • the claimant is/was in a safe house
  • there is a court injunction against the partner/spouse and so on.

If you are satisfied, as far as possible, that the claimant is a victim of domestic violence, you should:

  • make the following notation in capital letters in retained notes in Household Notes on the NTC system “DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASE”
  • enter the same notation on IDMS Notes/ Assets and Action History
  • ensure that you only issue demands to, and take enforcement action against, each claimant separately for the amount(s) they are responsible for.
  • issue all letters manually . The Tax Credit and IDMS systems will continue to reflect a joint record and this cannot be amended at present.

If enforcement action becomes necessary, any court entry must be done manually and not through the County Court Bulk Centre (CCBC).