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HMRC internal manual

International Exchange of Information Manual

Legal framework for exchange: Overview

Customer specific information is confidential and cannot be disclosed except where there is a specific legal enactment allowing for it (CRCA05/s18). 

The exchange instruments covered in this guidance are agreements entered into by the UK Government, and brought into law through Regulations.  These agreements are therefore enactments that permit the disclosure of information, and create a legal gateway through the restrictions of CRCA05/s18.

All of the types of agreement share some key concepts in common, such as exchange being permitted only through a Competent Authority (IEIM101400), and information being ‘foreseeably relevant’ (IEIM101300).  They will also carry within them the defined parameters for what can and cannot be exchanged, and what the information can be used for.

A general background to what the parameters are is in IEIM200100, with taxes covered in IEIM200200.  Guidance on each type of agreement goes into the specifics of how these concepts apply in each case (IEIM210000).