2015/16 S9A enquiry.
Turns out the client has had overseas rental income for the past 15 years which hasn't been declared. 'Behaviour' has not been established yet, and so whether this was a careless or a deliberate ommission is currently unknown.
HMRC have requested records going back the entire 15 years. Are they entitled to do this at this stage i.e. before 'deliberate behaviour' has been established? Their justification is that they need the records in order to establish behaviour, but my argument is that the mere provision of records would not in itself enable them to do this, and so am resisting supplying the records unless and until 'deliberate behaviour' has been established by other means.
What are readers opinions/experiences on these 'previous years' requests, please? Are HMRC justified in requesting prior years' records at this stage, before behaviour has been established?