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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Enforcement action: county court proceedings: administration orders: AO hearings - general

When attendance is required

You must attend an AO hearing where either:

  • the HMRC debt is listed incorrectly
  • you consider that the court’s proposed order for payment is unreasonable.

You may also attend where you consider that your presence is desirable.

Where your attendance is unnecessary you should B/F the papers to a date 14 days after the AO hearing, to await a copy of the AO (form N94). If you learn that the debtor’s application was dismissed (the court is not required to notify you), continue collection.

Preparing for the hearing

At the hearing you will have to prove your claim for any items the debtor has omitted or listed incorrectly. You must therefore obtain certificates of debt for those items.

Where court fees are concerned you must obtain a signed copy of form 26B (unless you already have one) for magistrates’ court costs. Where county court fees are involved you should write to the court asking for a certificate of judgment to support your claim for the court fees awarded in the proceedings to be listed in an AO.

Pre-hearing checks

On the morning of the day of the hearing you should:

  • carry out an RP check (DMBM615040)
  • prepare an imminent proceedings list
  • complete your part of any certificates of debt.