Being subject to a tax investigation from HMRC can be a stressful and worrying experience.

A HMRC enquiry can be targeted at businesses of any size, and individuals.

Stephenson Smart’s tax investigation service supports our clients in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire through the investigation and helps them to provide HMRC with what they need. Even if you have done nothing wrong, you may still be selected for a detailed review of your tax affairs, which may result in an unnecessarily high tax bill if you are not protected.

Regardless of your circumstances, this work is extremely technical and will require significant time by a tax expert to resolve the matter with the Inspector. HMRC does not consider your costs when conducting its investigations and even a basic tax enquiry can result in thousands of pounds in professional fees.

Expert Tax Investigation Services

We have partnered with a market-leading provider, Markel Tax, who has an excellent reputation within the accountancy profession, for us to offer our clients the best tax investigation service available.

The service covers, subject to terms and conditions, unforeseen professional costs arising from any correspondence or visit relating to an enquiry from HMRC.

The cover is tailored and can provide a cost-effective approach, giving peace of mind.

The benefits of taking up our tax investigation service:

  • Pay by annual subscription – no hefty bill.
  • Covered for full professional representation by our experts.
  • Assurance that you do not have to simply concede to the Inspector’s demands.
  • We will fight your corner without you worrying about the fees.
  • Unlimited 24/7 access to an expert Business Legal Helpline, which can answer queries relating to Employment Law, Health and Safety matters and commercial issues.
Tax Investigations

The tax investigation service we provide is:


Our teams are experienced in supporting clients through HMRC tax investigations, to provide an efficient and personal service.


A cost-effective annual fee can save our clients from a large bill at the end of the investigation.


We have our clients back to do everything we can to get you the best possible outcome from the investigation.

We can support our clients by:

  • Providing expert advice to help you through the investigation.

  • Taking away the risk of a huge bill with our annual subscription service.
  • Fighting your corner to get you the best possible result.
  • Providing access to a Business Legal Helpline.

The cost of defending yourself professionally is potentially huge – enquiries are taking up to 24 months on average to complete and the defence costs are increasing; even when the outcome of the enquiry results in no adjustments to your tax position, the cost of the defence can escalate.

Whether it’s a cross-tax enquiry, a technical challenge or a detailed books and records review, our tax investigations service is designed to get the best possible result.

We cannot protect you from being selected for a tax investigation enquiry, but we can ensure you have experts to help you through it with ease.


Contrary to most UK law, in a tax investigation you are required to prove your innocence. It is not unheard of for an enquiry to last several years and we regularly see inspectors trawling through not only the business records but also personal expenditures such as grocery shopping, holidays, and car expenses to identify potential discrepancies.
HMRC generated total tax revenues of £731.1 billion in the financial year 2021 to 2022 – this is significantly higher than pre-pandemic levels across all taxes. A big contributor to this was that HMRC invested £100m in a Taxpayer Protection Taskforce with c1,200 staff to combat error and fraud in the government-backed support schemes including CJRS, SEISS and EOTHO. This taskforce generated £226m from 27,897 enquiries with a further 63,000 people contacted via letter campaigns in 2021/22 alone.
The amount of time a HMRC tax investigation can take varies depending on the circumstances and complexities of the investigation, it is not unusual for an enquiry to take several years.
The annual fee depends on the size of your business, or if you are an individual. Please get in touch for a quote if you are a Stephenson Smart client.