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HMRC internal manual

Self Assessment Manual

Records: movement of taxpayer records: introduction

Responsibility for an SA record

Responsibility for an SA record is allocated by Revenue activity, as follows

  • Processing
  • Technical
  • Debt Management
  • Banking and Accounting

Any office with responsibility for processing work may set up any SA record, and therefore accept processing responsibility. However, the computer determines responsibility for processing following the SA responsible office rules, which are explained in subject ‘SA Responsible Office Rules’ (SAM103090).

The current office with responsibility for processing work will always have an active responsibility to maintain that record. Other responsibilities are allocated when the need arises. Technical, debt management and banking and accounting responsibilities fall to the office, with that Revenue activity, associated with the office with responsibility for processing work.

Where appropriate, the advice available in this section is specific to either

  • A PAYE linked SA record, that is one containing PAYE details in the Other System and Other System Reference fields
  • An SA only record, that is one containing no entries in the Other System and Other System Reference fields

The subject ‘Amending or Breaking a PAYE link’ (SAM103010) gives more detailed advice regarding the automatic movement of SA records when the PAYE reference has been amended. The ‘Movement of SA Only Records’ Action Guide (SAM103051) is appropriate.

Transfer prompt

Where the SA record is not a trust record and is not linked to a PAYE record, whenever the operator attempts to make a change to that record, the system may

  • Refer to the responsible office rules


  • Where the relevant address suggests that processing responsibility for the record should be transferred, display a transfer prompt. See subject ‘Transfer Prompt’ (SAM103120). The operator may accept or reject the proposed transfer

Although Banking Operations has update access to change certain details on the SA record, an operator in Banking Operations will never receive the transfer prompt.

Work list

Note: Processing and compliance entries were removed from this list in October 2010 leaving entries for collection cases only.

A ‘Potential Transfer’ work item may be created in the other responsible offices, with the exception of that with accounting responsibility, when any of the following occur

  • The office with processing responsibility for the taxpayer uses function MAINTAIN RESPONSIBLE OFFICE to transfer their responsibility for the taxpayer
  • The office with responsibility for processing, debt management, or technical Revenue activity, changes an address or primary source on the taxpayer record, and the transfer prompt, function CASE AVAILABLE FOR TRANSFER, is invoked by the computer
  • The office with banking and accounting responsibility changes an address on the taxpayer record, and the SA responsible office rules suggest a transfer is appropriate

This work item will not be allocated to Banking Operations. When processing responsibility is transferred, accounting responsibility is reviewed and, if appropriate, transferred automatically.

Transfer of responsibility

The operator may initiate transfer of processing responsibility. Where a link to PAYE is in place, this is achieved through PAYE Employee in Year Maintenance ‘pulling’ the PAYE record and automatic processing taking the SA record. In all other circumstances, SA function MAINTAIN RESPONSIBLE OFFICE is used to ‘push’ the SA record to the new office.

Banking Operations responsibility, and passive technical and debt management responsibility, may be transferred as a result of the transfer of processing responsibility. The computer will review those responsibilities, following transfer of processing responsibility, and where appropriate transfer the responsibilities automatically.

Active technical and debt management responsibility can be transferred using SA function MAINTAIN RESPONSIBLE OFFICE.

Bulk transfers

The facility for bulk transfer of taxpayer records in PAYE will continue to be used. A facility for bulk transfer of SA records is available.