Appeals against tax penalties
29/02/2024

It is not unusual for taxpayers to find themselves in a position where they disagree with a tax decision issued by HMRC. There are a number of different options open to taxpayers seeking to use the review and appeals process.

Note, that there is a separate procedure to be followed by taxpayers that make a complaint about HMRC for issues such as unreasonable delays, mistakes and poor treatment by HMRC’s staff.

It may be possible to make an appeal against a tax decision. You can appeal to HMRC against a penalty, for example for:

  • an inaccurate return
  • sending in your tax return late
  • paying tax late
  • failing to keep adequate records

There is normally a 30-day deadline for making a claim, so time is of the essence. HMRC will then conduct a review, by using HMRC officers that were not involved in the original decision. A response to an appeal is usually made within 45 days but can take longer for complex issues.

If the taxpayers do not agree with HMRC’s review, there are further options available which include making an appeal to the tax tribunal or using the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) process. The ADR uses independent HMRC facilitators to help resolve disputes between HMRC and the taxpayer.


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