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HMRC internal manual

Holding and Movements Assurance Guidance

Notification of cash transactions: penalties and sanctions

The requirement to notify HMRC of cash payments over £9,000 for the sale of alcohol or provision of alcohol related services is important for generating information to help to target resources against risk and in helping to identify potential fraud. Where officers identify that a trader is not complying with the requirement all efforts must be made to raise the trader’s awareness to the requirements of the scheme and its benefits in protecting the legitimate trade and duty revenues against potential fraud. Officers identifying instances should firstly verbally advise the trader and confirm in writing of the requirement to notify these transactions and that subsequent failure to comply may result in the issue of a civil penalty.

Failure to notify cash transactions is an offence under section 118G of the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) 1979 with the potential of a fixed civil penalty of £250 being imposed on a trader under section 9(2) (b) of the Finance Act 1994. (See ECP Civil Penalties guidance for further information).The issue of a civil penalty should also be considered if officers identify persistent or systematic failures by the trader to comply with this requirement. Where any registered trader demonstrates an ongoing and significantly poor compliance record their suitability for continuing registration should be reviewed. (For further guidance see HMAG30000).

In cases of doubt officers should contact the Holding and Movement Policy Team for advice (Contact details can be found at HMAG140600).