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HMRC internal manual

Hydrocarbon Oils Strategy

From
HM Revenue & Customs
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Registered Dealers in Controlled Oils (RDCO): applying multiple penalties

Mineral Oil Reliefs Centre (MORC) issue penalties for non-submission of returns, while visiting officers may still issue them for incomplete or inaccurate returns. Multiple penalties must only be issued with care.

In past cases, Review and Appeals Officers have reduced the amount of the Fixed Penalty, where a separate Fixed Penalty had been issued for each of several Failures to render a RDCO Return, on the grounds that Issuing Officers had not considered and taken into account whether the trader’s excuses were ‘reasonable’.

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Please note that the penalty regime will change with effect from April 2010, and the amount of the civil penalty will not be fixed at £250 in all such cases, but will be variable according to the circumstances of each case.

It is also recommended that when considering the issue of a Fixed Penalty that Issuing Officers establish the total number of occasions when an RDCO Return has not been submitted in order to demonstrate that the issue of a Fixed Penalty (or Multiple Fixed Penalties) is reasonable and proportionate, as without evidence of any previous breaches of the Regulations, the issue of Multiple Penalties may be considered disproportionate.