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HMRC internal manual

Self Assessment Claims Manual

Overpayment relief: Dealing with claims

Overpayment relief claims are usually made to the local business unit, which deals with them using our normal approach of “process now, check later”.

Late claims

If the claim is late, you may consider whether the time limit for admitting the claim might be extended using the Board’s discretion - see SACM10035. The time limit should not necessarily be extended because the claimant only became aware of the overpayment or over-assessment after the time limit even if this was due to matters beyond their control.

Unsatisfactory claims

If the claim is not valid because it is not in the right form, see SACM12150, you should return it to the claimant explaining why it fails. If you do not have a valid claim there is no requirement to issue an enquiry notice in such circumstances.

Opening an enquiry

Before opening an enquiry you should consider whether

  • the claim is in time, see SACM12155
  • the person has overpaid or the assessment is excessive
  • the requirements for a valid claim, see SACM12050 and SACM12055, are met
  • the requirements for relief to be given, see SACM12065, are met
  • one of the exclusions listed in the legislation applies to the claim, see SACM12070
  • in particular, is the person able to make or amend a self-assessment to correct the error instead of claiming overpayment relief, see SACM12080, and
  • you need to make a discovery assessment or amendment, see SACM12165.

Claims in the correct format and made in time

If you have concerns regarding the overpayment relief claim or the quantum of the claim you should open an enquiry by giving notice in writing. The general rules on claims in Schedule 1A TMA apply to relief for overpayments. This means that, where appropriate, you can enquire into them before giving any relief for the amount claimed. See SACM8000.

If you enquire into an overpayment relief claim and decide that it is incorrect, you should issue a closure notice that

  • disallows the overpayment relief claim in whole or part, and
  • allows any part of the overpayment relief claim that you consider to be the right amount.

Unless you are enquiring into a claim you must give effect to it.

(This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)

Giving relief

Relief should be given either by the repayment of tax (see SAM110080-89 or COM53030) or by discharge of the amount of tax which they believe they should not have paid, or should not be due. To give relief for Class 4 NIC overpayments, see SAM114046. For companies, relief is given using COTAX, see COM53030.

Claims by employers must be referred to TALA, see SACM12035.