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HMRC internal manual

Enquiry Manual

Opening the Enquiry: Communications: Complaints

Complaints may arise on any enquiry case - the very nature of the work makes it inevitable. Some people will try to complain about your behaviour because they know you are about to discover their evasion. In other instances, no matter how courteous you have been, the subject matter causes offence, particularly enquiries into personal spending.

Enquiry Officers however do make mistakes. That is not surprising as enquiry work is not easy. However, whatever the circumstances you must try to be fair and polite, no matter what the provocation.

You must not take the attitude that because a taxpayer has committed an offence, or may have done so, they can be treated differently from other members of the public.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is unlikely to be appropriate where a taxpayer makes a complaint about your conduct or actions.

ADR is designed to resolve disputes about the enquiry. See the ADR web pages for guidance about ADR.