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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Enforcement action: country court proceedings: the defendant’s response to the claim: defences to claims against an employer or contractor

Amounts that employers and contractors are liable to deduct from earnings of others under Regulations (such as the Income Tax (Pay As You Earn) Regulations 2003) are recoverable from the employer ‘as if … charged under Schedule E by way of an assessment on the employer’, although there are no appeal provisions.

Claims for payment of deductions are therefore based purely on facts. You will have to refer to the specific Regulations, including the corresponding Social Security and Student Loan Regulations that relate to the amounts in your claim, and at the hearing you will have to prove the facts.

Evidence of debt

The primary evidence that you will produce at the hearing is a certificate (or certificates) of debt, prepared under the appropriate legislation. It is normally sufficient to prove your case, but not always.

Where the employer or contractor has returned the amount due on form P35, CIS36 or forms P14 it is often helpful to produce these forms as evidence in support of the claim. You will need to explain any difference between the amount of your claim and that shown by the returns or give evidence generally from the sources from which the certificate was obtained.