UK residents with foreign income or gains: certificates of residence: What HMRC will check - reason and date for which certification is required
When an Officer receives a request for a Certificate of Residence (CoR), including a request to certify residence on a specific form, they should initially check:
- Why the customer wants HMRC to certify that they are a resident of the UK, including which Double Taxation Agreement (DTA) and income article the customer intends to claim relief under.
- If the customer requires a CoR for any purpose other than claiming relief from, or refunds of, foreign taxes under a DTA, the instructions at INTM162140 should be followed instead.
- Whether the other state provides a specific form, or use of words, which should be used to claim the relief in question.
The country specific pages of the Double Taxation Relief manual (DT2140 (HMRC website) provides details of the forms and words known to be used by other fiscal authorities (usually under the ‘relief from [name of territory] tax’ or ‘claims procedure’ section of the country specific guidance).
Whilst HMRC tries to keep the DTR manual updated there will be occasions where it contains references to forms which are no longer used by the other state or where it does not mention forms which have been recently introduced.
- If a customer does not believe it would be appropriate to complete a specific form which is mentioned in the DTR manual, the Officer can issue a general CoR instead but they should advise the customer that it may cause delay in their claim being processed if the other state insists on the specific form being completed.
- The date as at, or period for which, the customer requires a CoR.
HMRC will normally certify that a person is a resident of the UK as at the date of issue. However, HMRC can also certify that a person was resident for a certain period, so long as the period does not end later than the date of issue (HMRC cannot certify that a person will be a resident of the UK for any future period because we cannot verify whether that will be the case).
An Officer should also remember that a CoR can only be issued to a third party (such as an agent or other person acting on behalf of the customer) if the customer has provided consent for them to do so. Consent may be provided in the form of a 64-8 (external website) or in any other format. Once consent has been obtained, the Officer should note the extent of the consent on the taxpayers’ record (on SA or COTAX) for possible future use