Any windfalls over £500 need to be declared. If you try and hide it, these things have a habit of coming back to bite you in the posterior. If you tried to open a new bank account you may find that problematical as you would have to pass a credit check. Best to be upfront.
Sharing from experiences of dealing with debt
The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively.
Bob Marley. http://kallis3.blogs.iva.co.uk
Why are you getting a tax refund ? If you are self employed HMRC will be aware of your IVA and might dob you in anyway!
Tax refunds are, seemingly, treated differently by many IP's. I have seen some treated as windfalls and some completely ignored. I have also seen some treated as extra income (which, by twisting the logic, they can be interpreted as).
My opinions are merely that .. opinions based on experience. Always seek professional advice.
IVA Completed 23rd July 2013 .... C.C. 10th January 2014 http://foggy.blogs.iva.co.uk
Are HMRC listed as one of your creditors? If your IVA is protocol compliant, HMRC will first use any rebate to offset against your debt with them, and pay any surplus to you for you to introduce to your IVA.
You will not be able to keep the rebate, and the normal windfall rules do not apply in this instance, as the IVA protocol specifically states how tax rebates should be handled.
I would speak to your IP now to save any awkwardness later.
Extract from 2016 IVA protocol below, for your reference;
26. Set-off of repayments
Any repayment due to you from HMRC relating to a period before the
arrangement was approved shall be applied firstly against the HMRC claim in
the arrangement. Any surplus will be repaid to you and you must pay it to the
Supervisor for the benefit of the arrangement.
Any repayment due to you from HMRC relating to a period after the
arrangement was approved shall be applied firstly against other sums owed to
HMRC for the post arrangement period. Any surplus will be repaid to you and
you will pay it to the Supervisor for the benefit of the arrangement.