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Counting the cost

05 August 2014 / Ximena Montes Manzano
Issue: 4463 / Categories: Comment & Analysis , appeals , First-tier Tribunal , Admin

Circumstances in which the First-tier Tribunal might make an award of costs


  • The general rule in the First-tier Tribunal is against the award of costs.
  • Costs may be awarded by the tribunal but only in specific circumstances.
  • Examples of unreasonable conduct.
  • The rules applied in a practical example.
  • Even if a case is lost costs may be refunded if there has been unfair conduct.

The two-tiered tribunal system has been operating for more than five years. Even readers who have not had first-hand experience of it will know of this specialised tax tribunal that will hear appeals against HMRC’s decisions assessments and determinations.

The system was envisaged and intended to be accessible user-friendly and less formal than the civil courts. A feature of the First-tier Tribunal that assists accessibility is the general rule against awards for costs...

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