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SA Enquiry

 We have recently received a letter from HMRC enquiring into a 2007/08 SA return. The basis for the enquiry is that our client was stopped at a UK airport July 2007 with £13k cash when leaving the country. The inspector is now questioning the source of the funds and the absence of any bank interest. Is he out of time as they were aware of the issue July 2007, the return was submitted on time but the enquiry letter raised 13.03.12.

Many thanks for any thoughts.


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21st May 2012 12:35

SA Enquiry?
This is an enquiry anticipating a discovery assessment, and these can be raised up to 20 years after the event. The revenue are not using the power of enquiry into the return (and if they are they are wrong) but separate information gathering powers given by the act. Tread carefully after finding out just what your client was up to, simply refusing to co-operate will not help the client's position in the long run, better, if there is an "innocent" explanation, to point out that they cannot use SA powers (if they are incorrectly using them) but provide the information anyway to demonstrate maximum co-operation and thus minimise penalties.

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21st May 2012 12:59

Just wondering . . .

I am just wondering what, if anything, happened following the finding that the client had this cash on him at the airport.

Was the cash seized by the authorities?  If so, ultimately was the cash returned to the client?  What explanation, if any, did the client provide to the authorities at the time for having the cash?  Was the client prosecuted (for example for a money laundering offence) in connection with the cash?

I suggest you need to know the answers to all these questions before giving a substantive reply to HMRC.  The last thing you want is to reply to HMRC now only to be told that your reply is inconsistent with what was said by the client at the time!


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