Circumstances under which an enquiry is completed
An enquiry is completed either:
- when we inform and notify you (by means of a ‘closure notice’) that the enquiry is complete and state the conclusions we have reached in the enquiry; or
- automatically if no closure notice has been given, and:
- three years after the filing date has passed; or
- if the return was made after the filing date, three years after the date on which you originally made the return has passed.
Content and time limits of a closure notice
A closure notice must either:
- state that in our opinion no amendment of your tax return is required; or
- state that in our opinion an amendment is required and make an amendment of your tax return which gives effect to our conclusions (for example that not enough, or too much, tax has been paid).
We will also charge interest on the amount (or additional amount) of tax chargeable as a result of the amendment, backdated from the filing date of the return, until the amount is paid (see RSTP4002).
We cannot give a closure notice later than three years after the filing date or, if the return was made after the filing date, three years after the date on which you originally made the return. A closure notice takes effect when we issue it.
If the closure notice given by us makes an amendment of your tax return, you cannot then make your own amendment of our amendment, even if the time limit for you normally being able to do so has not expired.
If your self-assessed return contains an inaccuracy, depending on the circumstances and the nature of the inaccuracy you may also be liable to a penalty (see RSTP3011).
You must pay any amount or additional amount of tax (and, where applicable, interest) chargeable as a result of our amendment within 30 days beginning with the date on which the notice of the amendment was given. Should you fail to do this, tax is due and payable to us and we may take measures to recover the debt (see RSTP5001).
If you fail to pay any amount of the tax (and, where applicable, interest) due by the date by which the amount must be paid then you are liable to a penalty for failing to pay tax on time (see RSTP3008).
If our amendment results in less tax being payable, then we will repay that amount to you with interest (see RSTP4004).
Applying to the tribunal for a direction to complete an enquiry
You can apply to the tribunal for a direction that we must give a closure notice within a specified period (for example, you may feel that we are taking too long to carry out the enquiry and wish it to be closed). The tribunal must give this direction unless it is satisfied that we have reasonable grounds for not giving a closure notice within that period.
Further guidance on how to apply to the tribunal for such a direction is available on the Scottish Tribunals website, or you can email the Scottish Tribunals at: firstname.lastname@example.org.