I have been corresponding with HMRC about some aspects of my 2014/15 tax return, for which the deadline for issuing an Enquiry passed on 31 Jan 2017. Without having mentioned this in my previous correspondence, HMRC have now written to me stating that "a S9A Enquiry notice was issued on 11 Jan 2017" but I definitely did not receive this letter. I have not moved house recently and have not had any trouble with any other HMRC letters. The letter I did receive on 2nd March refers to writing to me "and my agent" on 11th January 2017 in order to "ask for some information." So, I have a number of questions arising from all of this, for which any guidance welcome:
1) I understand HMRC don't have to prove receipt, so what level of proof do they have to show that it was actually sent? Can I ask them to prove it was actually posted? Does a Notice of Enquiry need to be sent by registered post? It seems odd to me that in their letter of 2nd March they didn't just attach the 11th Jan letter and I still haven't seen it. I presume I should therefore at the very least ask to see a copy of the letter of 11th January.
2) can the issue be resolved by reference to the advisor referred to? I have asked them twice to name the advisor they sent it to but they have not done so. I think it was KPMG as they used to act for me some time ago. I presume if KPMG received a notice of Enquiry about someone that was not a current client, they would not just throw it away, but probably would return it to HMRC. Can I ask them to prove that the advisor received the letter, even if I didn't?
3) the 2nd March letter refers to the 11th Jan letter "asking for some information". That certainly doesn't sound like a notice of Enquiry to me. Surely, if it was, they would have stated that clearly in the 2nd March letter and would have described it differently. I presume seeing a copy of the 11th Jan letter will resolve this issue.
4) In a subsequent letter, they stated there is NOT an open Enquiry and they don't intend to open an Enquiry. Am i entitled to rely on that statement if they are now contradicting themselves by saying that actually a Notice of Enquiry was issued before the deadline?
Welcome any guidance on these questions. Many thanks for your time and consideration.