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HMRC internal manual

Insurance Policyholder Taxation Manual

Overseas insurers: release from requirement to appoint a tax representative: other circumstances

Insurer is resident in an EEA member state where it is a criminal offence to discloseinformation to HMRC

An insurer may apply to HMRC for a release from the obligation to nominate a taxrepresentative if it is resident in a member state of the European Economic Area(‘EEA’) and under the law of that state

  • it would be a criminal offence to disclose to HMRC the information set out in ICTA88/S552 about UK resident policyholders, and
  • on 17 March 1998 it would also have been a criminal offence to do so.

An application for release must be sent to HMRC at the address given in IPTM9010 explaining the reasons for making it in full. If noexplanation is given then HMRC is entitled to issue a notice to the overseas insurerwithin 30 days of the application requiring an explanation of why it would be a criminaloffence to provide information to HMRC, with reference to the laws of the EEA state inquestion.

A release cannot be given on these grounds for an insurer resident in a state where itonly became a criminal offence after 17 March 1998 to disclose the relevant information toHMRC.

UK business of the overseas insurer ceases or declines to negligible value

IPTM9020 explains that an overseas insurer must nominate a tax representative ifgross premiums on relevant insurances are at least £1million and that this requirementcontinues to apply even if the gross premiums fall below £1million, unless they cease ordecline to a negligible amount, below £100,000, say. This might happen if the insurertransferred all or most of its UK business to another insurer.

The insurer may then apply to HMRC at the address given in IPTM9010for a release from the requirement to appoint to a tax representative. HMRC isentitled to investigate an application for release by asking for more information within30 days of receiving it, for example, by asking the insurer to produce evidence that thebusiness has fallen to a low level or been transferred.

Further reference and feedback IPTM1013