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Validity of alternative dispute resolution agreements

13 November 2018 / Waqar Shah
Issue: 4672 / Categories: Comment & Analysis

Road remains open


  • Alternative dispute resolution is a useful option to litigation.
  • Is an agreement reached under ADR binding on all parties involved?
  • The First-tier Tribunal found that under some conditions HMRC can resile from the terms.
  • Judicial review is the only way the taxpayer may be able to enforce the agreement.

The phrase ‘my word is my bond’ goes back at least two centuries and in its Latin form as dictum meum pactum was adopted as the motto of the London Stock Exchange. Although it has never been the official or unofficial motto of HMRC – or its predecessors – a casual glance at the decision of the First-tier Tribunal in The Serpentine Trust Ltd (TC6719) (Serpentine 2) might lead some to consider that the courts openly allow HMRC to break...

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