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Seafarer. SED concession? Not quite 12 months.

Long term seafarer didn't achieve full 12 months due to illness.

HMRC have told me 'Seafarers Earnings Deduction' cannot be allowed because there is no provision for exceptional circumstances - either the deduction is due under the claim rules or it is not. 

The legislation and documantion reveals no apparent exceptions or concessions.

Just wondered if anyone here has any experience of any discretion being granted.

My client had a fresh SED period start properly and the overseas tests all worked through the year BUT then it finished after 360 days when he was taken ill and had to return to the UK for urgent medical reasons (and was then off sick another year).

Thanks

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By SteveRA
12th Jul 2018 15:59

I deal with several SED claims every year, and have done for over 20 years and I have never seen any discretion. The legislation is clear, it must be a qualifying period of 365 days or more.
I had a fairly detailed look at the HMRC employment manual for you, cannot see any concessions regarding this.
Sadly I think you are stuck with the decision, your client’s claim has failed. He needs to restart a fresh period once back at work.

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12th Jul 2018 16:38

One of the basic conditions is a 365 qualifying period there are no concessions . I have experienced this with a client who only did 364 days. HMRC attitude is its black and white, no grey areas.

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13th Jul 2018 13:46

I was under the impression that where a Qualifying Period was broken by exceptional circumstances, eg a return to the UK because of illness, then this period is ignored for the purposes of fulfilling the 365 days period; such that if your client returned to his normal overseas duties following the illness/recuperation, the 365 days accumulation is deemed unbroken?

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15th Jul 2018 13:33

Thanks for your replies so far. My research indicates the exceptional doesn’t apply to seafarers just overseas non resident workers -90 day rule etc.

Anyone had any luck with seafarers? There’s quite a large income and tax liability at stake here.

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