Personal Tax

Should I appeal to the Tribunal?

Produced by Tolley and written by Anne Redston
  • 22 Dec 2021 18:49

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

  • Should I appeal to the Tribunal?
  • Introduction
  • Payment of the tax in dispute
  • The merits of the case
  • Procedural issues
  • The Tribunal’s jurisdiction
  • Costs
  • The First-tier Tribunal
  • The Upper Tribunal and above
  • Reputation, confidentiality and privacy
  • More...

Should I appeal to the Tribunal?

Anne is a barrister who sits as a judge of the First-tier Tax Tribunal. The commentary in this guidance note is her personal view as she is not authorised to write on behalf of the Tribunals Service or the judiciary.


Before you read this guidance note you should read the Appealing an HMRC decision ― outline guidance note. You are also advised to consider the possibility of an HMRC review, see the HMRC review of a decision guidance note.

This note considers the main things to consider when deciding whether or not to appeal to the Tribunal. It discusses the payment of the tax in dispute, costs, the merits of the case, and issues around privacy and confidentiality.

Remember that this guidance note, and the other guidance notes on appealing to the Tribunal, are only a summary; they do not cover all situations. You may need to take further advice in relation to any particular appeal position. If the appeal is to the Scottish First-tier Tribunal, the procedure may not be the same as that set out here. You are advised to take specialist advice.

Payment of the tax in dispute

For some VAT appeals, the VAT in dispute must be paid before the appeal, unless HMRC agrees (or, if HMRC does not agree, the Tribunal agrees) that the taxpayer would suffer hardship if the VAT in dispute had to be paid.

For most direct tax appeals, HMRC usually agrees to postpone the tax until after the appeal process

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