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Business Records Checks

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HMRC has announced that it will be re-launching its Business Records Checks (BRC) starting in November 2012.

HMRC intends to write to those businesses selected for a BRC and follow that up with a phone call. In that call HMRC will ask about the business record-keeping. This is intended to last about 10 to 15 minutes, so you can expect it will be carefully scripted and quite in-depth.

Based on the responses given, HMRC will then decide (almost on a traffic light basis) that:

– The business records aren’t adequate and arrange for a face-to-face visit from a Tax Inspector

– Deem that the record-keeping needs to be improved, so pass it to their support team to do some ‘education’ to the business

– Deem that the business records are sufficiently well maintained, therefore, no visit will be needed.

Basically, adequate records are given the green light, records that could do with some improvement are allocated an amber light and the inadequate records are awarded a red light.

If you get a ‘green light’ from HMRC , then you are fine – for the moment. Anything else leaves you open to a major enquiry or investigation from HMRC, and should be avoided at all costs.

Anything other than green may also result in a financial penalty being levied by HMRC.

Please speak to one of our team if you are in any way concerned about your standard of record-keeping. We can advise you on this and do a health-check on the adequacy of your business records and advise you about any changes you may wish to consider. We will be happy to help improve your business record-keeping systems or we can offer to maintain your records for you to the standards required.