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HW Tax Compliance

Code of Practice 8

Facing a tax investigation? Need to make a disclosure to HMRC? Don’t worry. One of our team will be able to help. Just get in touch.

What is Code of Practice 8?

Where HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) believe that a taxpayer has deliberately tried to pay less than the correct amount due or has taken advantage of a tax avoidance scheme, they will make a challenge.

If HMRC do not consider that fraud has taken place,  Code of Practice 8 is normally issued by Specialist Investigations.  Some taxpayers may view this as a fishing exercise by HMRC, but you are well advised to take such matters seriously.

Where Code of Practice 8 has been issued by another department of HMRC, it is because the matter is being coordinated and directed overall by Specialist Investigations.

Code of Practice 8 can be used to investigate tax avoidance schemes, the use of trusts or other structures, and the residency and domicile of a taxpayer.

What is HMRC looking for?

HMRC will write to any taxpayer enclosing the booklet entitled Code of Practice 8 telling them that they are under investigation.  However, HMRC are not obliged to tell a taxpayer why they are under investigation.

Code of  Practice 8 is a fact-finding approach and documents such as previously submitted tax returns will be reviewed as part of the investigation.  The issues being investigated under may span a number of years but may or may not necessarily cover all the entries on a Tax Return.

What happens next?

This depends on what HMRC find (or don’t find, as the case may be):

  • If there is no evidence of fraud and no additional tax is due, HMRC will simply conclude their investigation.
  • If any amount of tax is due, a Settlement will be sought for the all the tax, interest and potentially penalties for all years.
  • If fraud is discovered, Code of Practice 8 will be withdrawn and replaced by Code of Practice 9.

If  you wish to discuss this or any other matter with a member of the team, please contact us.

If you cannot find the information you need on our website, please contact Paul Malin or Andy Maxfield using our contact form or email directly to pmalin@hwca.com or amaxfield@hwca.com

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Haines Watts Birmingham
Sterling House
71 Francis Road
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B16 8SP

Leeds

Haines Watts Leeds
Sterling House
1 Sheepscar Court
Meanwood Road
Leeds
LS7 2BB

London

Haines Watts London
New Derwent House
69 – 73 Theobalds Road
London
WC1X 8TA

Our addresses

Birmingham

Haines Watts Birmingham
Sterling House
71 Francis Road
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B16 8SP

Tel: 0121 456 1613

Leeds

Haines Watts Leeds
Sterling House
1 Sheepscar Court
Meanwood Road
Leeds
LS7 2BB

Tel: 0113 3981100

London

Haines Watts London
New Derwent House
69 – 73 Theobalds Road
London
WC1X 8TA

Tel: 0207 025 4650