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HMRC internal manual

Excise Assessments Interim Guidance

Notifying joint and several liability: reviews and rights of appeal

Under section 14(2) of the Finance Act 1994, a person whose liability to pay duty results from a decision to assess another person may require HMRC to review that decision.

Notice must be given in writing within 30 days of notification setting out the decision. The reviewed decision may then be appealed to the VAT and Duties Tribunals.

Because of this, it is important to identify persons with secondary liability and send the letter notifying them of their joint and several liability at the same time as the assessment is notified to the person with primary liability.

This will ensure that the 30 days the assessed person has to require a formal departmental review will run concurrently with the 30 days the person with secondary liability has to require a review.

If the person with secondary liability is notified at a later date, the 30 days will run from the date of notification, and the debt may not be recovered during this period.