Investigation work: opening under Code 8: opening remarks
The initial letter informing the taxpayer or agent of SI’s interest under Code 8 is likely to have mentioned in general terms the aspects that are under enquiry.
At the beginning of the meeting the Investigator should briefly outline the reasons for SI’s interest in the taxpayer’s affairs and explain that questions will follow which will afford an opportunity for the taxpayer to make a disclosure or provide an opportunity for explanations regarding the matter(s) under review. A brief word on the function of SI may be appropriate making reference to the copy of Code of Practice 8, which he or she should have already received.
If the case has previously been working as a Local Compliance investigation, the opportunity should be taken by the Investigator to formally withdraw Code of Practice 11 or 14 or Factsheet CC/FS1a. If penalty factsheets have already been issued, they will remain relevant. Remind the taxpayer that they remain relevant. Check that the guidance in EM1360 et seq has been followed, and see SIOG9220
The taxpayer should be reminded (where it is the case) that although the whole investigation is proceeding under Code of Practice 8, one or more years of Self Assessment Returns may be under enquiry, notice having already been given under S9A.
It is important in cases that are Self Assessment enquiries that the standard rule whereby HMRC does not provide the reasons for the enquiry is not compromised.