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HMRC internal manual

Excise Assessments Interim Guidance

Recovering excess repayments made by HMRC: assessments for failure to reimburse consumers

The statutory reimbursement scheme, only applies where a claimant accept that by receiving a repayment of sums overpaid by way of excise duty they or their business would be unjustly enriched at the consumer’s expense.

This is because the consumers have for practical purposes borne the economic burden of the duty charged in error and by not passing the repayment back to them the claimant would benefit financially as a result.

In such cases a repayment of overpaid duty will only be made if the claimant agrees to reimburse those consumers in accordance with the terms of the statutory reimbursement scheme.

If a claimant agrees to enter the reimbursement arrangements but then fails to reimburse the consumers either in full or in part, then we may assess to recover those amounts.

Finance Act 1997 Schedule 5 paragraph 14(2) allows a best judgement assessment to be made to recover amounts previously repaid, from a person or business, who fails to reimburse the consumers in the manner agreed under any reimbursement arrangements.