In order to register for taxes with HMRC or start managing taxes online you will need to set up a government gateway account. It will allow you to manage VAT, PAYE/CIS, Corporation Tax and/or Self-Assessment online.
To set up your online government account, click here.
You will need to enter your full name (I’d suggest entering the business name here), email address and provide a password. You will then be given a 12 digit user ID number and you'll automatically be logged into your new tax account - remember to keep your password and ID in a safe place.
Add taxes to online account.
To add a tax to your account you'll need to select 'Add a tax, duty or scheme', then 'select the tax' you'd like to manage and click 'continue'.
You now have two options which are explained in more detail below:
Option 1: if you are already registered for the tax.
Option 2: if you haven't signed up for the tax.
If you are already registered for the tax
If you are already registered for the tax, select 'I want to sign up to use the online service for a tax for which the business is already registered', select the relevant tax again (don't ask us why!) and then enter the details required - a summary is given below:-
VAT: VAT Registration Number, Principal Place of Business postcode, Date of registration for VAT, Final month of last VAT return submitted and Box 5 figure on last VAT return submitted (i.e. the amount paid to HMRC).
Corporation Tax: Company Unique Tax Reference (UTR), Principal Place of Business postcode, Company number
CIS/PAYE: Employers Reference, Accounts Office Reference.
Self-Assessment: Personal Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR), Postcode, National Insurance Number
A letter will then be sent to your business address with a code on it and you should receive it within 10 days. When you receive your letter you must activate the service within 28 days of the date shown on the letter or the code will expire and you will have to request a new one. You'll need to login to your government gateway account to enter the code - select 'Activate', enter the code and select 'Activate' again. You will then be able to manage your tax online.
If you haven't signed up for the tax
If you haven't yet signed up for the tax you will need to select "I want to tell HMRC that I am in business and need to register for a new tax or tell HMRC that the company is now active ".
You will then have to read and click 'next' through the following screens; 'what types of business can use this service', 'types of business that cannot use this service' and 'what to do next'.
You then have the option to set up your business up for VAT, PAYE/CIS, Corporation Tax & Self-Assessment - advice for different tax set ups are given below:
VAT - this is quite a complicated tax setup and I would suggest clicking on the '?' if you're not sure about how to answer a question. Advice on how to answer two questions that people usually struggle with are shown below:
Please indicate the reason for this application: if you are setting up for VAT because you deal with a lot of VAT registered businesses and would like to claim back VAT on your expenses or you've hit the VAT threshold, you should usually select 'Making or intending to make taxable supplies'.
The business wants VAT returns to be based on accounting periods ending: I would suggest having a period that matches the year end for your business. So if your business had a year end of '31 May', I would suggest a VAT stagger of 'February, May, August and November'.
PAYE/CIS - HMRC recommendation:
HMRC strongly recommends that you do not register for PAYE as an employer if your first pay date is more than 28 days from today. According to HMRC, this will avoid unnecessary administration for you.