HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Summary proceedings (Sc): How the sheriff officer effects service of the summons

You should check the other guidance available on GOV.UK from HMRC as Brexit updates to those pages are being prioritised before manuals.

Usually the sheriff officer will effect service by sending to the defender by recordeddelivery first class post, the defender’s copy summons (form 1b) and a certificate ofcitation (DMBM675100).

Where either postal service is not possible or it is unsuccessful the defender’s copysummons (form1b) may be served

  • personally on the defender
  • by being left with an occupant at the defender’s dwelling place or with an employee at the defender’s place of business
  • by depositing it in the defender’s dwelling place or place of business by means of a letter-box or other lawful means or
  • affixing it to the door of the defender’s dwelling place or place of business.

The latter two methods of service will only be used if

  • the other methods have been unsuccessful and
  • the sheriff officer sends, by ordinary post, a letter containing a copy of the defender’s copy summons, to the address where the defender is most likely to be found.