Mediation - Alternative Dispute Resolution

If you’re in a tax dispute with HMRC and can’t reach an agreement, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mediation could help you resolve matters. Here’s what you need to know about mediation and how our Tax Investigations & Dispute Resolution team can help you.

Get specialist mediation help today: +44 (0)20 7710 3389

What is ADR?

What is ADR?

Mediation is a form of ADR that is proven to help resolve disputes with HMRC, particularly where matters have become drawn out. It allows parties to air their grievances before an independent facilitator, and then move to a negotiated settlement, avoiding the stress and expense of litigation and Tribunal.

Why use ADR to settle a dispute with HMRC?

Why use ADR to settle a dispute with HMRC?

Entering into ADR mediation will not affect a taxpayers' existing review or appeal rights, but provides the opportunity for taxpayers and HMRC to have a full and frank discussion and explore the potential for a settlement without resorting to litigation. ADR is also less formal than a Tribunal hearing and is far quicker and more cost-effective.

According to HMRC’s annual report, mediation has a high success rate, with 88% of mediations arriving at an agreement. At Buzzacott, our own in-house CEDR (The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution) accredited mediator, Barbara Bento, ensures all parties are encouraged to reach an agreement where possible. 

In cases where mediation does not resolve the matter, by the end of the process, the taxpayer and their agent will still have gained greater clarity on the outstanding issues. This will put them in a good position to decide what steps to take next, and the likelihood of success should the case proceed to Tribunal.

Is my case suitable for mediation/ADR?

Is my case suitable for mediation/ADR?

The most suitable cases for mediation are those where:

  • You and HMRC have different views on the facts
  • Communication with HMRC has broken down
  • HMRC has disputed evidence you have given, and point to other evidence instead
  • HMRC continues to request more information from you, which is drawing out proceedings
  • It is unclear what information HMRC has used, and they may have made the wrong assumptions

HMRC recently clarified its position on mediation, making it clear that it can be used at any point in the enquiry process. In reality, mediation is only practical once the majority of the facts have been established and the parties have had sight of all relevant information. 

Click here to see Barbara Bento’s, Buzzacott’s CEDR accredited mediator, top 10 ADR tips.

How can we help?

How we can help

We have extensive experience in resolving disputes with HMRC before they make it to Tribunal and potentially costly litigation. We offer a comprehensive mediation service that includes:  

  • Reviewing your case to confirm its suitability for ADR
  • If appropriate, preparing and lodging your application for ADR
  • Liaising with the appointed HMRC facilitator and appointing our own in-house CEDR accredited mediator
  • Preparing your case and representations for the ADR process
  • Attending and making representations on your behalf at any ADR meeting

Our approach has contributed to our 100% record of ending mediations with an agreement that satisfies our clients. Find out how we helped a client settle their dispute with HMRC through ADR mediation here.

The day I first met HMRC with Mark, I should’ve been a nervous wreck. But I wasn’t because Mark and his team had spent time preparing me for the meeting. I felt lucky having Mark by my side at that meeting, fighting my corner. Mark was able to get HMRC to agree to his plan for fast-tracking my case to its end.

Request a callback or meeting

If you'd like us to give you a call, fill in your details below and we'll email to arrange a good time to speak to either our Head of Tax investigations team, Mark Taylor, or our own in-house CEDR accredited mediator, Barbara Bento. All communications are in the strictest confidence.

If you'd prefer to speak to our team directly, please call +44 (0)20 7710 3389.

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