HMRC now conducting assurance visits
The Alcohol Wholesale Registration Scheme (‘AWRS’) is now in full effect and HM Revenue and Customs (‘HMRC’) are already following through on their promises to heavily enforce the AWRS by the means of assurance visits.
In numerous meetings with HMRC Officers during the registration stage it had been made clear that HMRC intended to vigorously enforce compliance with the AWRS by the means of assurance visits. Officers stated that during these visits they intended to ensure businesses remain fit and proper and are conducting necessary FITTED due diligence checks. Failure to evidence this would result in businesses losing their registrations or having conditions imposed.
We have now heard of the first instance of HMRC conducting an assurance visit to a wholesaler who had been granted their AWRS registration only to have it revoked within the first two weeks of the scheme being in full force. We have been informed that the business in question has suffered the revocation of their registration due to not upholding the record keeping and due diligence procedures outlined to HMRC when going through the application stage.
This should stand as a stark warning to any businesses currently holding this valuable registration to ensure that they continue to demonstrate a high level of compliance with the requirements of Notice 2002 and conduct risk based FITTED due diligence checks in to all relevant trading partners.
For assistance with ensuring you remain compliant with the legal obligations of the AWRS and retain this critical registration please see our service page or contact us today.