A4.213 Late claims
In general, a claim or election is not admitted if it is made after the statutory time limit. However, HMRC has discretion, under an Extra-Statutory Concession, to admit a late claim for repayment of tax where tax has been overpaid because of an error by HMRC or another government department and there is no dispute about the facts1.
HMRC considers however that because its internal guidance is wider in scope than this Extra-Statutory Concession, ESC B41, it is unlikely that they will have to consider cases under the concession. Instead they will usually follow the Self-Assessment Claims Manual guidance which covers the possibility of making a late claims in a variety of situations and the procedures that will be followed2.
Can you have a reasonable excuse for failing to make a claim within the time limit?
One interesting question that has come before the courts is whether or not a taxpayer can invoke the safeguard of reasonable excuse for failing to make a claim within the statutory time limit (and thus effectively make a late claim when the reasonable excuse ceases to exist).
Reasonable excuse (see A4.568–A4.568H) may be relevant as a defence against HMRC levying a penalty for the taxpayer's failure to fulfil a tax