Release of HMRC Employment histories update
At the end of 2013, HM Coroner for Liverpool, André Rebello, issued a notice under paragraph 1, schedule 5 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009, requiring HMRC to produce a work history in connection with an inquest he has been conducting. However, a representative of HMRC failed to attend and give evidence. HMRC took the view that this notice is not binding on it and they would only issue work histories when ordered to do so by the High Court. HMRC proceeded to issue judicial review proceedings and asked the Administrative Court to the schedule 5 notices.
Lord Justice Gross and Mr Justice Burnett have now released a note of their decision, which confirms that the Court is satisfied that schedule 5 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009 binds the Crown by necessary implication. Therefore, HMRC is bound to comply with the notices to produce work history information issued by the Coroner under that Act. Their reasoned judgment is to be released after Easter.
The Ministry of Justice (MOJ) has also confirmed that it has secured cross-Government clearance to amend the worked histories legislation. The amendment will seek to restore HMRC’s practice of disclosing work histories of the Deceased without the need for personal representatives and their legal representatives to obtain a Court order. This announcement is particularly welcomed by those representing mesothelioma victims who had to endure unnecessary increased delay and expense during the HMRC’s policy change.