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Off to mediation with HMRC

03 January 2023 / Carl Islam
Issue: 4870 / Categories: Comment & Analysis
Follow the Yellow Brick Road: 2

Key points

  • At the start of the conversation the demeanour of the mediator should be one of polite curiosity.
  • HMRC will not settle by agreement for an amount which is less than it would reasonably expect to obtain from litigation.
  • At the conclusion of the mediation the mediator will draft a summary of what has been agreed and what remains in dispute.
  • Before the mediation day the difference between a ‘tax fact’ and a ‘negotiating position’ should be made clear to the taxpayer by their legal advisers.

The mediator’s style in a tax dispute is usually facilitative. On the mediation day the mediator’s role is to listen and help the participants to have a conversation – whatever the outcome. The mediator does not possess all the facts and unlike a judge has not heard all of the evidence therefore it is not the mediator’s...

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