Why your accountant should not deal with your HMRC investigation

Date published: 02 October 2020

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Being investigated by HMRC can be a daunting process for many; underpaid tax, penalties, fines and even prosecution can be on the cards. You probably think it’s time to go to your accountant when you receive a letter from HMRC. 

As much as you may think it’s the best choice to make, it’s actually the worst - there are 3 fundamental reasons why accountants are not equipped to deal with your HMRC investigation or enquiry:

  1. Accountants don’t understand the technicalities of your investigation and don’t possess the relevant knowledge to be able to know how to resolve it. All different areas of tax require a speciality by someone who knows the finer details, and so speaking to a specialist in the relevant area is vital to ensuring you receive the correct advice;
  2. They lack knowledge on HMRC legislation. Accountants may know small aspects of HMRC legislation, but when it comes to dealing with an investigation, there is a lot you need to know which is only something a tax specialist would know. Legislation can be very complex and a failure to understand this correctly can lead you into further problems with HMRC; and
  3. Finally, accountants are not specialists in the area which is related to your tax investigation. HMRC investigations can range from VAT, Corporation Tax to Furlough Scheme Abuse and so it requires specialists who know each area rigorously, it’s the only way you can ensure resolving it quickly and efficiently without spending lots of money and not getting anywhere!

Accountants have expertise in preparing accounts and advising on the amount of tax that is due, but they lack experience in handling enquiries and investigations as they usually deal with so few.


Being investigated by HMRC can be a daunting process.
Being investigated by HMRC can be a daunting process. Photo: Rido - stock.adobe.com


Experts understand relevant legislation, regulations and procedures along with HMRC guidelines whether it’s to do with HMRC powers to request information, records, access to premises, interviews, observations, raids, complaints, appeals, penalties and so on. Also, experts understand how to best formulate a strategy to handle a particular enquiry and execute it.

As a consequence, HMRC will respond differently depending on who is involved which will determine how drawn out a case may be and how much tax you pay, sanctions or in serious cases, length of sentence.

Mohammad Yasin, Tax Partner at Bower & Leaf says the following: "Many small businesses approach us after having their accountants deal with their investigations for months or years and not being able to get anywhere. We then have to intervene and try our best to resolve the mess they have made. Allowing us to deal with your case from the very beginning can allow us to have the most impact and bring things to a close with HMRC and eliminate any fines or penalties."

Do you require professional help and advice with your HMRC investigation or enquiry?

Are you a small business or individual?

Call Bower & Leaf today for a free no obligation consultation on 0800 702 2516

Or email enquiries@bowerandleaf.co.uk

Bower & Leaf offer the most competitive rates in the market, speak to one of their tax specialists today.

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