Accelerated payment notices

Produced by Tolley

The following Personal Tax guidance note Produced by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Accelerated payment notices
  • Introduction
  • Summary
  • Scope of the accelerated payment rules
  • Criteria for issue of an APN
  • Options open to the taxpayer on receipt of an APN
  • Right of appeal
  • Penalties
  • Interest
  • Collection proceedings
  • More...

Accelerated payment notices

Introduction

Accelerated payment notices (APNs) were introduced with effect from 17 July 2014 and allow HMRC to require early payments of disputed tax and / or national insurance contributions (NIC) in relation to certain tax avoidance cases. HMRC can issue APNs to require early payment where those cases are subject to an open enquiry or appeal.

Until then, HMRC generally allowed disputed tax to be postponed under TMA 1970, s 55, pending the outcome of the enquiry or litigation. This meant that effectively the taxpayer had a low-interest loan from the Government until the case was settled, which could be a number of years.

The rules also reflect Parliament’s approach of using tax policy to influence the behaviour of taxpayers and advisers. Given the need to pay the tax much sooner, it was hoped that the appetite for such avoidance schemes would be reduced.

This guidance note covers the rules which apply to APNs that are issued to individuals or companies (including APNs which relate to PAYE and NIC liabilities issued to such persons as employers). It does not cover APNs issued to partners and partnerships, known as partner payment notices (PPNs). The procedure for PPNs is slightly different, see section 2.16 of the HMRC guidance and Simon’s Taxes A7.248C.

Summary

HMRC can require accelerated tax payments via an APN where the tax arrangement producing the tax advantage is under enquiry or appeal and either:

  1. the chosen arrangements are notifiable under the DOTAS rules and have been notified

  2. HMRC has given a follower notice in relation to the same matter, or

  3. a general anti-abuse rule (GAAR) counteraction notice or a GAAR notice of a final decision (following an opinion of the GAAR panel) has been given in relation to the same tax advantage

The taxpayer has 90 days from the date the APN was given to:

  1. accept the APN and make the payment specified, or

  2. make written representations to HMRC, either against the validity of the notice or the

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