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HMRC internal manual

PAYE Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Appeals and reviews: decision makers and reviewers: introduction

Under the new arrangements that started on 1 April 2009, appeals are dealt with in two stages.

The first stage is handled by the ‘decision maker’, see PAYE7005.

For appeals against automatic system generated fixed penalties the ‘decision maker’ is the person who initially considers the appeal. If the appeal is not accepted, HMRC will have to offer a review of the decision. If a review is requested, the appeal will pass to the ‘Review’ stage. HMRC Customer Operations Appeals Review Unit in Londonderry will handle the review work for automatic fixed filing penalties and surcharge. Their role will be to offer an independent review of the original decision.

If you deal with such an appeal you should consider whether there is reasonable excuse following the guidance in PAYE7006. Once you have reached your decision

  • If you agree the grounds for appeal, you can proceed to settle the appeal and discharge the penalty. There is no change to the existing guidance for these cases in the Transitional Period
  • For cases where you cannot accept the grounds for appeal, you should prepare stock letter SA633 from SEES explaining your decision to the customer. Attach a ‘Request for review’ form SA634. Please do not alter or adapt the wording of the letter for any reason. Arrange for the penalties for that year / period to be informally stood over until a request for review is received or action is reviewed at the end of the BF period

The Bf date should be 45 days from the date you issue the decision letter

The ‘Reviewers’ guide is at PAYE7011.