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Where Taxpayers and Advisers Meet

Compliance Check Scope

Joined:Sat May 13, 2017 5:45 pm
Compliance Check Scope

Postby SF12659 » Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:56 pm

I have been subject to a HMRC compliance check for about 6 months now; this was due to my earnings for 2016-17 being deemed too low. I don't have a problem with being investigated, I have nothing to hide, done nothing wrong. I was out of the country for 3 months, not earning, visiting family. My business (limited company) suffered a downturn, so I took low or no wage and lived off my savings together with my partner's earnings from her limited company, which she pays into my account as this is where our bills go from - we basically treat my account like a joint account.

HMRC have issued a fine for £300 for not providing all account details. I questioned this and ultimately they provided the account numbers they want to see. They have provided the account number for my limited company bank account, also the number for my partner's limited company bank account. I have pushed back saying the fine is not acceptable as they are limited company accounts, not my personal accounts. I provided the proof by showing them the paying in slips.

HMRC have 'suspended collection' of the £300 fine, but have said they need to see the account statements.

My question - is this within scope of a compliance check? Doesn't this fall into the realms of a limited company compliance check, which is not what they are supposed to be doing?

Again, I have nothing to hide and have done nothing wrong, but I feel it's overstepping the mark somewhat.

Joined:Wed Aug 06, 2008 3:39 pm
Location:Operate Nationally but based in Aberdeen

Re: Compliance Check Scope

Postby wamstax » Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:55 pm

Clearly YOUR LTD company bank account is within your control and could therefore be requested if this was a reasonable request to review your personal compliance check. Assuming it was a reasonable request in relation to your personal compliance check then it would be in your power and possession to produce and you could in that event be penalised for not producing them. Your partners LTD company bank account is not under your control and therefore it is not within your power or possession and therefore you cannot be penalised for failing to provide the coy statements.

I agree fully that request for company bank accounts should be resisted unless either the request is a reasonable one or they have opened a company enquiry.

Personally in the absence of a company enquiry I would say to them that prima fracie their request for your LTD company bank account is outside the scope of their compliance check into you as an individual and you would ask them for their statutory authority for making such a request and/or under what circumstances they consider the request to be reasonable.

Of course if you are absolutely sure that there is nothing to be seen or disclosed in relation to the company then perhaps a pragmatic approach of merely presenting your own company statements might bring a potentially lengthy and complex argument to a close. There is also the possibility that your reluctance to provide your sole company’s statement could lead to them opening a company enquiry to satisfy their nosiness. That would potentially increase your costs and time needed to close your personal enquiry.

Can I just also add that if HMRC could show that something was wrong in relation to your check and it was reasonable for your company request to be sought standing and relying on statute to refuse a request could lead to a forming of attitude on HMRCs part. Also each case needs to be judged on its own merits depending on the appropriate tactics to be engaged to get matters resolved.
regards and hope this helps
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