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HMRC internal manual

Enquiry Manual

Concluding the Enquiry: Certificates of Full Disclosure: General

Before you conclude the enquiry you must consider whether you need to ask for a certificate of full disclosure.

Different versions of the certificate are available in SEES, see EM3812. A suitable time to ask for a completed certificate is when the taxpayer has given you all the information you have requested and you are discussing the tax, interest and penalty computations.

There is no statutory authority to demand a completed certificate, but when you have established that the returns or accounts are incorrect, it is reasonable to ask for written assurance that all relevant matters have been disclosed. When all the omissions have already been disclosed in correspondence or at a meeting, you must still ask for a certificate.

You should not ask for a certificate at the end of an enquiry where either there is nothing wrong or there are only non culpable adjustments for the enquiry year only.

Where the settlement involves a partnership return you should ask each partner for a certificate.

When the settlement involves a close company and there have been extractive irregularities, you must request a certificate from each director or participator who has been party to the enquiry whether or not a linked enquiry was opened into their own tax return. Where there are no extractive irregularities a certificate by the director(s) or appropriate officer of the company may still be appropriate depending on the nature of the enquiry and the irregularities.

You must always request a certificate for a company settlement involving incorrect accounts when the company is liable to a penalty.