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How to handle an HMRC enquiry

31 July 2023 / David Harmer
Issue: 4899 / Categories: Comment & Analysis , HMRC , IR35 , Investigations
I will handle it

Key points

  • Keep all records – and remind clients to keep all tax records for six years.
  • There is no statutory obligation on a taxpayer to meet with HMRC.
  • Whether HMRC questions are answered in a meeting or in writing makes little difference to the length of the enquiry.
  • When arguing a case stick to the pertinent fundamentals of personal service control and mutuality of obligations and then use case law examples which support the client’s case.
  • Correspondence may one day be put before a judge.

Arguably the best course of action a taxpayer can take to defend their IR35 position begins before HMRC makes contact. While it may be an adage it really does pay to prepare and to seek professional advice from an accountant or an independent specialist where necessary.

Whether the client is a contractor operating under Chapter 8 who must determine...

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