Documents - specific statutory records
HMRC has specified certain records that need to be kept. This may be because it is in accordance with EU legislation (particularly VAT). In some cases it may be because HMRC think there would otherwise be a risk, for example detailed stock records for those that might be affected by MTIC fraud.
It is more common for HMRC to specify records for VAT and PAYE purposes. These regimes relate to transactions and tax liability is decided throughout the course of the accounting period (unlike IT, CGT and CT).
For example, VAT registered persons must keep a VAT account under the VAT regulations. But not all VAT records are specified. The VAT regulations require retention of business and accounting records, but it is left up to VAT registered persons to construe this as they think best.
Information and documents cease to be a person's statutory records when the period for which they must be preserved has expired.
As well as deciding what needs to be recorded, a person also has flexibility about the form of records they keep.