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HMRC internal manual

Self Assessment Claims Manual

Unsuccessful Attempts to make a Claim or Election: Early Claims

It is possible to attempt to make a claim too early. For example

  • an allowance may have been announced in the Budget but it may only apply to a future tax year
  • relief for trading losses may be claimed before the end of the accounting period in which the loss arose (see BIM75050)
  • claims that relate to a year of assessment cannot generally be made before the year has ended.

Where an attempt is made to claim something too early, you should

  • write to the claimant
  • say that a valid claim has not been made
  • explain why, and
  • tell them how and when they can make a claim.

In order to make a valid claim, the claimant must make it within the set time limit. An attempt to make a claim too early is not a valid claim and we must not treat it as if it were. We cannot open an enquiry in order to refuse the early attempt because there is no claim to refuse or allow and the enquiry procedures cannot apply.There should be no stockpiling of early claims until the future relevant date. Whilst the Parliamentary written answer at

SACM10035 mentioned the possible acceptance of a late claim, where there was an earlier intention to make the claim that answer was only about late claims. It envisaged an immediate intention to make a claim now, not an intention to make the claim at some time in the future.