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HMRC internal manual

Self Assessment Manual

Statements: interest calculation: interest enquiries and objections

Whilst any office can deal with a general interest enquiry, objections should be referred to the office responsible for the case.

An enquiry may be regarded as a question of a general nature, for example, about the rate of interest or the period for which interest is payable and the response will normally be factual.

An objection may involve consideration whether or not concessional treatment is appropriate. In the main, unless HMRC has been at fault objections should be satisfied again by reference to fact, for example that the application of Section 86 TMA is mandatory.

If it is necessary to see the amount of interest accruing or charged, function VIEW STATEMENT is used to view

  • Details of the taxpayer statements issued
  • The next statement for the position as at ‘today’The IRIS function SAIN can be used to confirm how interest has been calculated. They should also be used if the taxpayer asks for a breakdown of how interest was arrived at.

If an enquiry is, or results in, an objection to interest it should be dealt with quickly. Any objection should be acknowledged and the taxpayer advised that the disputed interest will continue to appear on any statement issued whilst the investigation is in progress. Bear in mind that

  • Interest whether charged or accruing will continue to be included on every statement issued to the taxpayer
  • If you do not respond quickly the taxpayer may become increasingly annoyed with each statement that is issuedIn exceptional circumstances it may be appropriate to consider whether the issue of statements should be inhibited while the objection is being investigated.

For more information see subject ‘Inhibition of statements’ in section ‘Statement issue’ (SAM131030).

Any interest objections that cannot be resolved locally should be sent to the Banking Operations Interest Review Unit. For more information see section ‘Interest’ in business area ‘Int/Pen/Surcharge’ (SAM60000 onwards).