HMRC internal manual

Tax Credits Technical Manual

TCTM06109 - Claims and Notification: Appointees

The Tax Credits (Claims and Notifications) Regulations 2002, Regs 17 and 18

Some claimants may not be able to manage their own affairs. They may not be able to handle money or be able to understand forms.

In such cases another person may act on their behalf. These people are called appointees.

Who can be an appointee?

An appointee will be a person who:

  • has been appointed by the Court of Protection; or
  • in Scotland is a tutor, curator or any other legally appointed guardian, or
  • in Northern Ireland is a controller appointed by the High Court, or
  • has been appointed by the Department for Work and Pensions (in relation to claims for benefits or other tax credits).

If a person hasn’t been appointed in the above conditions a person may apply in writing to the Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs to be appointed to act on a claimant’s behalf and Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs may then appoint that person to act.

For the Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs to appoint an appointee:

  • appointee must be at least 18 years old.
  • the appointee does not need to be related to the claimant.

The appointee takes on the full responsibility for making any claim, this means:

  • they must sign the claim instead of the claimant and are responsible for notifying the Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs of any changes, which may affect entitlement,
  • the claimant actually remains liable for any overpayment although the appointee will no doubt be involved in the process of recovering an overpayment, particularly from a subsequent award,
  • appointees can be liable to penalties, if it was the appointee who knowingly provided wrong information.

Appointees can resign from their appointment by giving one month’s notice in writing.

The Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs can terminate an appointment at any time and an appointment automatically ends if another person is appointed to act by the Courts.