Bartram case scuppers determination appeals

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HMRC estimates of tax owed by someone who hasn’t filed a return has the same force as a self-assessment tax return and can’t be appealed until a return is filed, the upper tier tribunal ruled.

The case of Michael Bartram v HMRC (UKUT 184, TCC) concerned a taxpayer who had failed to file income tax returns for three consecutive years, prompting HMRC to issue determinations of his tax liability for those years.

Bartram appealed against the determinations to the first-tier tribunal. In July last year, a tribunal struck out the appeal on the grounds that no appeal could be made against an HMRC determination under section 28c of the Taxes Management Act 1970 (TMA).

Anne Fairpo said in her tax podcast this week (16 July) that the judge’s decision was not wholly surprising. A victory for the taxpayer may have given them an advantage over HMRC, so it was “probably a pragmatic response from the tribunal”,  she said.

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About Nick Huber

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I’m a specialist business journalist and have a particular interest in tax and technology. 


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16th Jul 2012 14:43

Puzzle no2

So lets say they make a determination for 2005/6 and 2006/7. You send in your tax returns to correct this as its lower  and they say...sorry out of time, you cant reduce the detrminations, time limits passed. BUT if the tax due is more, we will increase them....

Seems to be what we agree?

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16th Jul 2012 15:17

Not quite...

...unless I've misunderstood your point.

The time limit for HMRC to make a determination is set by Para 36(5) Sch 18 FA 1998 at (effectively in most cases) 4 years after the end of the accounting period.

Under Para 40(3) ibidem the company has at least 12 months from the date of the determination to displace it by submitting a CT self assessment, which then 'supersedes' it. 


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