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HMRC internal manual

Technical Teams Operational Guidance

HM Revenue & Customs
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Code 9 cases registered prior to 1/9/05 (Hansard): Historical Record: setting up the opening Hansard meeting: who should attend the opening Hansard meeting

The use of the caution and tape recorder under PACE mean that we should interview taxpayers individually. The taxpayer is entitled to have a solicitor present (but not free legal advice as they are not being detained, nor is the meeting at a police station) but is not obliged to do so. The taxpayer may also have an accountant or tax advisor present. The Investigator should encourage the person likely to prepare any Disclosure Report to attend the opening meeting. It should be noted that this is in contrast to interviews conducted in criminal investigations where generally only a solicitor is permitted.

The Investigator should not attend the Hansard meeting alone. They should have a colleague present who is trained to use the tape recorder and understands the requirements of conducting the meeting under PACE. This does not preclude the possibility of a silent observer in addition. SI attendees should not exceed those accompanying the taxpayer, unless by prior agreement (for example to enable the SI Accountant to attend). It should be remembered that PACE Code of Practice C precludes the use of oppression.