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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Pre-enforcement: consider the defaulter: Armed Forces personnel

BFPO addresses are regarded as being within the UK for recovery and enforcement purposes.

Regular armed forces

Stationed in this country

If the customer is stationed in this country or is likely to return soon, you should send the normal applications for payment and enforce payment in the normal way.

Stationed abroad

If the customer is stationed abroad and is not likely to return to the UK in the near future, write to the customer, warning them of accruing interest where appropriate and requesting payment in full or their proposals for payment, supported by a statement of means. In debt technical offices in England and Wales only, include a warning about county court proceedings.

If you do not receive a satisfactory response:

  • in debt technical offices in England and Wales take county court proceedings
  • in debt technical offices in Scotland, refer to the EIS Edinburgh with a completed certificate of debt and a report showing (if known) the defaulter’s:

    • branch of service
    • rank and service number
    • present posting and its duration
    • total period of service engagement.
  • (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)

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Reserve and auxiliary forces personnel

Special provisions apply to members of the reserve and auxiliary forces, including the Territorial Army, while they are on periods of service with those forces. Where you learn that the customer is on service or it appears that the customer is financially affected by someone else’s call-up, do not commence recovery proceedings without the prior authority of the Enforcement Technical Team (Debt Management Bradford) or in Scotland, EIS Edinburgh.