How much/often do you negotiate with HMRC on behalf of a client

I became MAAT last year and have recently been taking my ATT exams as I want to specialise in taxation. Something that hasn't really been covered in the taxation units of the AAT qualification or the ATT exams is how much an accountant has to contact HMRC for confirmation or decisions on things. For example, if someone is working from home, it is usual to apportion certain costs (electricity/broadband etc) and HMRC gives guidance on how to do this but do you actually need to get confirmation from them that the way you have decided to do this is - for example if you apportion them by the fraction of the house that is used for business use do you need to agree this fraction with them?

I would be really interested to hear how much members contact HMRC about decisions like this.

Thanks in advance. :001_smile:


  • Simmyluvsu
    Simmyluvsu Registered Posts: 55 ? ? ?
    The HMRC guidance is there for exactly that reason - to guide you, I wouldn't expect you to contact them over how to claim apportioned cost for home office use etc.
    I've just passed ATT and I only contact HMRC for clarification on more unusual
    and complex queries
  • ademoore
    ademoore Registered Posts: 146 ? ? ?
    I tend to agree with the above - I don't contact HMRC either unless it's necessary.

    At the end of the day, as long as you can justify your workings, and they make logical sense (write down your workings/notes as you calculate them, as you will forget your thinking over time) then there shouldn't be a problem.
  • T.C.
    T.C. Registered, Tutor Posts: 1,448
    Yes, agreed. You only need to contact HMRC if the situation is particularly unusual or your client disagrees with your opinions/views.
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    I concur :)

    If you're following general accepted practice, then just carry on.
  • CelticStar
    CelticStar MAAT Posts: 142 ? ? ?
    Thank you to everyone who has replied to this thread. What you have written in broadly what I thought, so that's good and has reassured me. :001_smile:
  • villapb
    villapb Registered Posts: 357
    We only negotiate with hmrc if the client can,t pay the tax bill lol.......................
  • villapb
    villapb Registered Posts: 357
    ps everything we do, is keeping in mind a hmrc inspection and if we can cover ourselves we plough on..........if you wanted hmrc,s blessing you would get nothing done................
  • CelticStar
    CelticStar MAAT Posts: 142 ? ? ?
    villapb wrote: »
    We only negotiate with hmrc if the client can,t pay the tax bill lol.......................

    That seems very sensible. :lol:
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