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HMRC internal manual

National Insurance Manual

Class 1: Personal Liability Notices: Appeals

Section 121D, Social Security Administration Act 1992

The legislation at section 121D, Social Security Administration Act 1992 allows for an individual who is served with a Personal Liability Notice to appeal the issue of the Notice only on the grounds that are specified under paragraph (2) of the above act.

The specific grounds for an appeal against the issue of a Personal Liability Notices are:

  • All or part of the National Insurance Contributions specified in the notice should not have been included.
  • The failure to pay the National Insurance Contributions due was not the result of fraud or neglect on the part of that individual.
  • The individual issued with the Personal Liability Notice was not an officer of the company at the time of the fraudulent or negligent failure to pay.
  • The level of the apportionment of the debt to the named individual under (3)(a) or (b) of Section 121C of the Act was unreasonable.

HMRC will carry out a thorough review and consider all the available information prior to any decision being made on whether to issue a Personal Liability Notice.

If the decision made is that it is appropriate to issue a Personal Liability Notice, a Notice and a letter explaining how HMRC arrived at that decision will be sent to each ‘culpable officer’. The letter will clearly set out the individual’s right of appeal against the decision.

If the individual disagrees with the decision made they have 30 days from the date of the Notice to make an appeal to HMRC. The appeal must be made in writing to the office specified at NIM12210 and must state the ground(s) under Section 121D(2) that the appeal is being made. The individual may also request postponement of the disputed liability until the appeal is settled (see ARTG 2510).

If, following the initial appeal, agreement cannot be reached then, providing the individual has been given the opportunity of requesting an internal review, an appeal can be made direct to the Tribunals Service.

Information and guidance on appeals, reviews and tribunals can be found on the HMRC website and in the fact sheet HMRC1.

A copy of the Appeals form plus further information with regard to appeals to the Tribunals Service can be found at