HMRC telephone helpline

HMRC telephone helpline

HMRC telephone helpline if you have any questions about your corporation tax, self assessment, VAT, PAYE and payroll compliance, tax credits and so on.

HMRC stands for HM Revenue and Customs. They are the official Tax Authority in the United Kingdom. They provide dedicated telephone helpline for specific tax related subject matters to help businesses and companies to deal with their tax matters efficiently.

Ensure you dial the correct numbers to avoid being transferred from department to department to reach the right person to speak to.

For general help, you may tweet with @HMRCcustomers.

HMRC DepartmentTel Helpline
Self Assessment general enquiriesTelephone:
0300 200 3310
Textphone:
0300 200 3319
Outside UK:
+44 161 931 9070

Postal:
Self Assessment
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1AS
United Kingdom
Tax credits general enquiriesTelephone:
0345 300 3900
Textphone:
0345 300 3909
Outside UK:
+44 02890 538 192

Postal:
Complaints or change of circumstances
Tax Credit Office
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1LR
United Kingdom

New tax credit claims
Tax Credit Claims
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1HE
Child benefit general enquiriesTelephone:
0300 200 3100
Textphone:
0300 200 3103
Outside UK:
+44 161 210 3086

Postal:
HM Revenue and Customs
Child Benefit Office
PO Box 1
Newcastle Upon Tyne
NE88 1AA
United Kingdom
Income tax general enquiries and Marriage AllowanceTelephone:
0300 200 3300
Textphone:
0300 200 3319
Outside UK:
+44 135 535 9022

Postal:
Pay As You Earn and Self Assessment
HM Revenue an Customs
BX9 1AS
United Kingdom
National Insurance general enquiriesTelephone:
0300 200 3500
Textphone:
0300 200 3519
Outside UK:
44 191 203 7010

Postal:
PT Operations North East England
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1AN
United Kingdom
Employers general enquiriesTelephone:
0300 200 3200
Textphone:
0300 200 3212
Outside UK:
+44 151 268 0558
Fax:
03000 523 030

Postal:
PT Operations North East England
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1BX
United Kingdom
VAT general enquiriesTelephone:
0300 200 3700
Textphone:
0300 200 3719
Outside UK:
+44 2920 501 261

Postal:
HM Revenue and Customs
VAT Written Enquiries Team
Portcullis House
21 India Street
Glasgow
G2 4PZ
United Kingdom
Construction Industry Scheme general enquiriesTelephone:
0300 200 3210
Textphone:
0300 200 3219
Outside UK:
+44 161 930 8706

Postal:
PT Operations North East England
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1BX
United Kingdom
Technical support with HMRC online servicesTelephone:
0300 200 3600
Textphone:
0300 200 3603
Outside UK:
+44 161 930 8445

If you are going to use a courier service to deliver your documents to HMRC with PO Box and BX postcodes.

Please use the address below instead:

HM Revenue and Customs
Benton Park View
Newcastle Upon Tyne
NE98 1ZZ
United Kingdom

Undue delay in staff disciplinary appeal

Undue delay in staff disciplinary appeal

As employers, when handling staff appeal, care must be taken not to unreasonably prolong appeal hearing and decision process. The ACAS codes recommend five working days as usually appropriate.

ACAS stands for Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service.

The Employment Act 2002 also required employers to ensure each step and action taken under your staff disciplinary Appeal procedure without unreasonable delay.

Lets look at a situation. A member of staff was being disciplined for alleged in direct competition with the employer. The staff was dismissed immediately. The staff wrote to the employer to appeal against their decisions on 21 November.

The appeal hearing was made to hear on 2 December. It was more than 5 working days.

The decision of appeal was communicated to the staff on 08 December. The whole appeal process took 11 working days to finalize. This was an obvious undue delay in the staff disciplinary Appeal process.

The Employment Tribunals or the court may take the unreasonable delay in your staff disciplinary appeal process into account when assessing employers’ reasonableness.

If the employer considered the allegations were serious enough to dismiss the staff immediately based on the evidences gathered then there should be no excuse to delay finalizing the appeal case.

What the Employment Tribunals or the court does not want was that employers use disciplinary process to get rid of their staff to avoid redundancy payout or compensation.

It is important that you include a staff disciplinary procedure in your staff handbook. If you do not have a staff handbook, it is the time to create one.

Treat staff right

Treat staff right

Treat staff right is Employer’s responsibilities and your staff is protected by the employment law in the United Kingdom.

Your staff could make a complaint with the Employment Tribunals and this may attract unwelcome publicity for your company. The publicity can be damaging your business reputation and labelled you as bad employers.

Staff handbook

You may put in place a staff policy and procedures at work so everyone understand their roles within your company, as an employer and as an employee and what are the rules your staff must follow. This staff policy and procedures often being called a Staff handbook and it is a must. Do not be put off by the fact that it is a time consuming task, the handbook is there to protect you as an employer and also will be used as a guide to resolve any disputes with your staff.

Staff rights to complaint

Your staff can make a compliant to Employment Tribunals against your company for any of the following:

  • Sacking your staff on unfair ground
  • Not allowing your staff to take their holidays or breaks
  • Refusing employees’ rights
  • Discriminating against people who work for you, want to work for you or have worked for you
  • Not providing safe working environment for your staff
  • Paying your staff less than the national minimum wage
  • Asking your staff to work long hours
  • Not following disciplinary procedures
  • Not paying your staff for sickness, maternity and redundancy
  • Not paying men and women equal pay for the same job.
Payroll Real Time Information

Payroll Real Time Information

Payroll Real Time Information (often abbreviated as RTI) reporting with HMRC is compulsory for businesses registered to join the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) scheme.

This means each time you make a salary or bonus payment you must report the income tax and national insurance contribution payable by your staff and your company before or on the day you paid your staff by submitting FPS form online.

If your company has notified HMRC that your payroll will on monthly basis and if in any a particular months no salary was made you must submit the form called EPS with HMRC stating zero payment was made.

Your company as the employer and has the responsibility to ensure correct income tax and national insurance contribution are deducted correctly from your staff and pay over to HMRC.

One man company

For a limited company, where the director is also the owner of the company, as long as the director is withdrawing monies from the company through salary and bonus payments, the company must register for PAYE scheme and submit PAYE forms with HM Revenue and Customs. The director is considered an employee of the company.

Payroll software

There are many independent payroll software providers you may choose and they normally provide technical support for new customers on how to use their payroll software for Real time Information reporting with HMRC.

National minimum wage

National minimum wage

National minimum wage is set by HM Revenue and Customs. Businesses in the United Kingdom must pay the minimum wage to their staff as required by law.

Your staff could make complaints against you with the HMRC when he/she become aware that you are not paying him/her according to the national minimum wage in the UK.

Every person working for your business is entitled to be paid the minimum wage rate per hour. Your staff must be at least school leaving age to get paid that wage rate.

Person working for for business include:

  • Your employees.
  • agency staff.
  • piece workers.
  • employees with disabilities.
  • staff paid by commission.
  • Directors who are employed by your business to carry out their duties under contract of employment.

UK minimum wage rates

The national minimum wage rates changes every April. It is your company’s responsibility to get the updated national minimum wage rates from HMRC and update your payroll system.

Your staff minimum wage rate per hour is calculated depending on your age.

  • Aged 25 and above
  • Aged 21-24
  • Aged 18-20
  • Under 18
  • Apprentice aged 19 and above

You may get the national minimum wage rates from gov.uk webiste.

You must give a payslip to your staff each time you pay them.

Staff handbook and appraisal

Staff handbook and appraisal

The employment law has given employees more protection in recent years. There are now disciplinary and grievances procedures you must follow if you are firing your staff. Employers who sacked their employees without reasonable grounds can get themselves into serious trouble.

However, if you stay on the right side of the law, follow all the statutory disciplinary procedures and fair about the reasons for dismissal you do have the right to sack your employees.

The laws are there to protect employees from bad employers. These laws also help employers to protect themselves from disgruntle employees.

The law is not a burden to good employers who look after their employees and promote fairness within workplace.

It is a good practice to have an employee handbook and formal appraisal system in place at work so that every employee is aware of your company’s policy and procedure and the purpose of the appraisal system.

The appraisal system is used to evaluate staff performance and any aspects of staff shortfall can be picked up and encourage improvements and it can also be used as planning for staff training on desired skills.

If you are thinking of employing people or your company has employees but do not have time to prepare employees handbook and appraisal forms. You are welcome to speak to our accountants. They will be able to offer you the best solutions.

Disciplinary meeting notes

Disciplinary meeting notes

Employers conducting staff disciplinary are advised to take notes of what has been said and discussed during the investigatory meeting, disciplinary hearing and appeal meeting.

Copies of the disciplinary meeting notes must be given to your staff concerned within reasonable time after each meeting so that your staff involved can digest the notes and highlight if there were misunderstanding as to what was discussed.

It is important to give your staff concerned the opportunity to comment on the notes and evidences discussed particularly where the case is serious enough to warrant dismissal of your staff.

Your staff disciplinary procedure is used to resolve disputes between employers and employees fairly and reasonably. It is not meant to use for abusing your staff or with intention to discriminate your staff you do not like.

The ACAS Code of Practice 1 suggests that refused or failed to provide copies of the meeting notes to the staff concerned is a breach of statutory disciplinary procedures and constitutes an unfair disciplinary process.

For an example, a staff was disciplined and a decision of misconduct was communicated and was sacked immediately. Copies of the disciplinary meeting notes should be provided to the staff about the same time the decision of misconduct was communicated so that the staff has the opportunity to comment on the notes and evidences and decide accordingly whether or not to make an appeal against the decision.

Provide your staff with the disciplinary meeting notes after your appeal hearing, It is obvious that you, as the employer has no intention to give your staff opportunity to comment on the meeting notes and the outcome of the disciplinary process is probably pre-decided and matters are pre-judged. The process is just a formality.

Your staff can make a claim against you, as the employers for being unfairly treated at work. This will definitely attract unwelcome publicity for your company. You won’t want that kind of publicity.

Staff disciplinary procedure

Staff disciplinary procedure

The UK employment law suggests all employers to introduce staff disciplinary procedure at work. As employers, you have to inform your staff of the disciplinary procedure in place and also explain the examples of actions that will amount to staff disciplinary and/or dismissal.

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) published guidance for employers on statutory disciplinary and grievance procedures. ACAS Code of Practice 1 provides details on how to draw up and operate a staff disciplinary procedure. The code provides reasonable steps of employers must follow in executing staff disciplinary process. It is also used as a guideline how reasonable you are as employer if your employee brings a claim for unfair dismissal at the Employment Tribunals.

Generally, the statutory minimum steps you must follow in your staff disciplinary procedure is discussed below. However, your own disciplinary procedure may allow for more warnings, meetings and other courses of action such as demotion or suspension.

Statutory Disciplinary Procedure

Step 1: Investigate To Establish Facts

Investigate the situation fully by talking to your staff concerned and any other staff who might be able to throw some light on the situation. Gather any evidence you can find including emails and letters. Interview any witnesses and take signed written statements from them if necessary.

Step 2: Invite The Employee Concern To An Investigatory Meeting

You must make it clear to them that the meeting is not part of a formal disciplinary procedure. The purpose of the meeting is to give them the opportunity to comment on the allegations.

Step 3: After The Investigatory Meeting

Should you think that a formal disciplinary hearing should be conducted then you must inform your staff concern in writing setting out the allegations include evidences supporting the allegations.

You must give your staff the right to be accompanied by a trade union representative or a work colleague.

Step 4: Go Ahead With Formal Disciplinary Hearing

Explain your complaint and your evidences and give your staff the opportunity to state their case, ask questions, give evidence and call their witnesses.

Step 5: Yours Decisions On The Disciplinary Hearing

If you decide on disciplinary action rather than dismissal, you should write to your staff spelling out what the misconduct is, what has to be done about it and the deadline. And explain the consequences if things don’t change – perhaps a final written warning and then the sack.

Step 6: Employee’s Right To Appeal

Try to get another person to chair the appeal hearing if possible. If this is not the option then try to be impartially as possible and don’t be afraid to overturned previous decision. After the appeal you have to let your staff know your final decision.

Failed To Follow Statutory Disciplinary Procedures

If you do not follow the basic disciplinary procedure and any claims against you by your staff will be considered automatic unfair dismissal and the employment tribunal can increase the compensation payable to your staff.

Only staff with more than a year of service are able to bring a claim at Employment Tribunals.

New employee

New employee

It is a great news when your business is expanding and you are taking on new employee.

If this is your first time employing a new staff for your business, your company must register to join the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) scheme with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), you will be effective an employer after you joined.

The registration application must be submitted to HM Revenue and Customs four weeks before the first salary is made to your new staff.

As new employer, you must request your new employee to provide you with Part 2 and Part 3 of Form P45. This form will have been given out to your new employee by his/her previous employer. You then submit the Part 3 of P45 to HMRC.

In situation where your new staff does not have the Form P45 because this is his/her first job in the United Kingdom or that he/she has not been in employment for a long time you will then require him/her to fill in the Form P46 then send it to HMRC.

If the new employee you are taking on is starting work in the UK for the first time you must advise them to apply for a National Insurance number from local Job Centre Plus.

Salary deductions

Salary deductions

Any salary deductions from your staff pay must let your staff know in advance by law.

Your staff is entitled to know in advance what deductions you will be making from his/her gross salary or wage and why. Most deductions are regulated by the Employment Rights Act 1996 and it is only legal when your employees’ contracts clearly explain in what circumstances you will make such deductions, or when your staff provides you with a written consent to make them.

Lawful salary deductions

However, some deductions are allowed under the Employment Rights Act:

  • Deductions for previous over-payment of wages
  • Deductions under Pay As You Earn (PAYE) scheme provisions such as income tax and National Insurance contribution.
  • Deductions that you make by law and hand over to a third party, such as an attachment of earnings order.
  • Deductions that you pay to a third party where your staff consents in writing such as payments to a pension company.
  • Deductions relating to strike action.
  • Deductions to satisfy a ruling by a court or tribunal that your staff has to pay you a certain amount.

Unlawful salary deductions

If you’re intending to make any deductions not shown on this list above, you would require a prior written consent from your staff. You must have the consent in writing before the event that gives rise to the deduction. If you get consent after you’ve deducted the money, that deduction is considered unlawful. That’s because you have changed an employees’ pay without their consent. this is in breach of contract unless you have included a provision which agreed to by your staff that in the particular circumstances you can take money out of their salary.

If you are making exactly the same fixed deductions each period, you can give out standing payment statement notifying of these deductions in advance, standing statements may be valid for up to a year.

Any variable or additional deductions still have to appear on the monthly or weekly payslip, and any changes to the fixed deductions must be notified in writing or through an amended standing statement of fixed deductions.

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