RSTP9002 - Obligation of confidentiality in relation to PTI

RSTPA guidance on the statutory obligation of confidentiality which relevant officials must comply with in relation to protected taxpayer information.

A statutory obligation of confidentiality in relation to PTI applies to ‘relevant officials’. Relevant officials are:

  • an individual who is (or was) a member of our Board;
  • an individual who is (or was) a member of one of the committees of our Board;
  • an individual who is (or was) our chief executive or other member of staff (this complements their professional duty as civil servants to maintain confidentiality); or
  • an individual who is (or was) exercising functions on our behalf, for example staff of our delegates (RoS and SEPA) who are exercising a delegated tax-related function (further, this would also include contractors such as an advocate engaged to conduct litigation for us in the higher courts or someone providing mediation services).

The general rule is that PTI must not be disclosed.

A relevant official may however disclose PTI where specifically permitted by law to do so: see RSTP9004, RSTP9005 or RSTP9006, read with RSTP9007.

RSTPA 2014 section 15

All relevant officials must make a formal statutory declaration acknowledging their obligation duty of confidentiality. The wrongful disclosure of PTI is a criminal offence: see RSTP9003.

Ref ID: 
Archive Date: 
15 March 2015
Last updated: 
15 March 2015
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