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If you claim tax relief on your expenses through the Self Assessment system, you can't send any new tax returns until any current enquiry's closed. HMRC just won't process any new tax returns for you until then. You can still send us the information for your new claim, though. As soon as the enquiry's over, our Compliance case workers will calculate your refund and submit the paperwork to HMRC as normal.
If you've made a claim through RIFT that's been submitted on a paper P87 form, HMRC may occasionally ask for more information. When that happens, they'll send out a standard enquiry letter and won't pay your refund until they get what they need. It's sometimes possible to make another claim while this is happening. One of our Compliance case workers will take a look at your new claim to see if it can be submitted straight away. In some cases, though, it may be best to wait for HMRC to pay out your refund for the earlier years first.
HMRC might open an enquiry if their records of your income don't match yours, whether that's PAYE or CIS. That's why it's so important to check the information you're submitting and to make sure it's all correct.
If you spot any problems with your income, let us know straight away. HMRC says it's your responsibility to make sure your tax returns are correct. If you spot a problem, we can make any changes needed before submitting anything to HMRC. That way there shouldn’t be any problems for you later down the line.
This can be a very difficult situation. Let’s look at an example of a customer who came to RIFT after he started to get suspicious that a claim submitted on his behalf by a business contact was not being done correctly.
We’ll call him Mr Roberts.
Mr Roberts had a business contact who said they could claim some expenses for him by completing a tax return. Mr Roberts agreed to go ahead, and the claim was successfully submitted and paid out by HMRC. However, he later started to doubt that the information submitted on his behalf was correct. The refund seemed very high and the expenses claimed didn't really match what he'd paid out to travel to and from work.
Mr Roberts realised he was never given a copy of the claim or tax return to check before it was submitted. He also discovered he couldn’t get hold of the person who completed it for him. They never even returned his documents to him after the claim was completed.
Mr Roberts decided to contact RIFT to see if we could help. One of our advisors checked the expenses claimed for him and submitted an amended claim. This time, the amounts accurately reflected his real work travel costs. Of course, this meant that there was some tax to pay back to HMRC. However, it was much better to submit an accurate claim than to wait for HMRC to open an enquiry.
If an enquiry into Mr Roberts' tax return had been opened before he contacted HMRC, it would have been too late. The errors in the claim would have meant penalties to pay on top of the extra tax. This would normally be up to 30% of the total tax that was due back!
If someone tells you they are worried about a claim that’s been put in for them or if they have told you that someone has told them to do something that you know is wrong, tell them to get in touch with RIFT.
We will able to sort out any past issues with their refunds or tax returns, just like we did for Mr Roberts. With HMRC, the quicker you let them know there has been a mistake, the more favourably they are likely to look on your case.
Wondering if you can claim a tax refund or need to submit a tax return? Use our online tools to find out if you're owed money by HMRC.Do I Qualify?
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RIFT Refunds, The Cobalt Building, 1600 Eureka Park, Lower Pemberton, Ashford, Kent, TN25 4BF
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