Your Tax Investigation: What You Need To Know
Tax law is complex; most people in the industry don’t know it well. There is a good chance that the HMRC officer on your case only has a rudimentary grasp of the rules. In this section of the site we’re going to strip back the jargon and help you get to grips with what’s really going on.
Your Tax Investigation: Early Questions
The majority tax investigations start in the same way, with a simple letter.
The wording is very casual; it will be along the lines of “We’d like some more information about..” but make no mistake, once you get a letter like this an investigation has started. HMRC don’t call it an investigation, preferring to use the term ‘enquiry’ but it is very much an investigation.
At this point it’s normal to have a whole bunch of questions that start with Am I being investigated? (you are, see above) and then quickly run to Why? What do they want? How long will this go on for? and How can I end it more quickly?
These questions and more are answered here: Early Questions.
Your Tax Investigation: How To Get Good And Useful Help
Here are some questions you might be asking… How do I find a good specialist advisor? What will this cost? What if I can’t afford a tax advisor? What if I’m skint?
It’s certainly good to have help, you are going to need all you can get – so if you can get it it, do get it! Your questions answered here: How To Get Good And Useful Help.
Your Tax Investigation: Discovery
To you and I a discovery is the finding of something, for example today I discovered mould at the bottom of my fridge. HMRC use discovery in the same way, but it has far reaching implications.
The thing is this, HMRC have a limited window to launch an investigation and they would dearly like to open up earlier years to have a good dig around in your past, but they can only go this once they have made a discovery. If they say they’ve make a discovery you need to know the implications.
Learn more about discovery here: Discovery.
Your Tax Investigation: The Heart Of The Storm
Can I amend my tax investigation figures? Have I been careless or negligent? Have I made a deliberate inaccuracy? Can HMRC open up more years? Can HMRC look at personal records? Who can I complain to and should I? How can I use the Data Protection Act?
Tax investigations throw out thousands of questions, here we look at the most common ones and give some simple answers and useful links. Click here: The Heart Of The Storm.
Your Tax Investigation: Endgame
Can I force the investigation to end? What do I need to know about penalties? What is scaling back?
Tax investigations throw out thousands of questions, here we look at the most common ones the come up towards the end of an investigation. Click here: Endgame.