Changes ahead on a useful concession
Extra Statutory Concession A19 (ESC A19) deals with situations where HMRC has failed to act on information submitted. Currently the concession is available where HMRC fails to act in a timely manner, or when it notified the taxpayer 12 months after the end of the tax year to which the assessment applies, or where the taxpayer could have reasonably believed their affairs were in order.
The concession also includes allowances for “exceptional circumstances” within 12 months of the tax year end, if HMRC failed more than once to use facts presented, or allowed arrears to build up over two consecutive tax years.
However, HMRC has now issued a consultation which is said to make ESC A19 more “user-friendly” and objective. The proposed revised criteria retain the requirement for HMRC to notify the taxpayer within 12 months of the tax year end and will be available for situations where HMRC issues an erroneous tax code, fails to issue one at all, or makes incorrect repayments. However, the “exceptional circumstances” outlined above will be removed.
Somehow, it seems that the new concession will be less helpful than the old one.
Date: 7th August, 2012
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