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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Pre-enforcement: Linking direct and indirect taxes: Why checks are made

Why check for enforceable (combined) debt

Despite the difficulties that our different, unlinked IT systems pose, it is vital that we are seen to be acting as one department as often as possible. This is particularly important when deciding to take enforcement action. (In England and Wales for example ‘enforcement action’ is defined as distraint or court proceedings)

For the time being checking for other debts must continue to be done manually. Whilst this is an additional activity it must become part of our everyday processes when considering enforcement for two reasons

  • we have a responsibility to ensure we are not incurring unnecessary legal costs for debtors (by taking separate enforcement actions), and
  • we enforce payment of as many debts as possible in one action, particularly in county court proceedings where it is very important to start action for the whole debt.