Okay, how many of you know what a UTR number is? If you don’t know, no worries, as we are here to help guide you and teach you everything there is to know about this phenomenon. One little tip before we jump in is to discard all the myths you may have heard about UTR application processes.
It’s not actually as complicated nor as difficult as it is made out to be. After all, it lets you be self-employed and work as your own boss. Who would not want that? We sure don’t mind it!
Ready to get started?
What is a UTR Number?
First and foremost, to understand the essence of what a UTR constitutes – we must address its core concept. UTR stands for Unique Taxpayer Reference. We know – saying UTR is a lot simpler than stating the whole phrase. Bit of a mouthful, isn’t it? Regardless, it is super important to know your UTR. Smile, we will get to that in a bit J
Your Unique Taxpayer Reference is a ten digit number that is published straight from the HM Revenue and Customs and is utilised to differentiate individual tax paying entities present within society.
A Unique Taxpayer Reference can be assigned to partnerships, commercial ventures, individuals, trusts and pretty much any kind of organisation. If you have registered yourself with HMRC, then you should ideally receive a Unique Taxpayer reference number automatically.
How can I get my UTR number?
So, if you’re looking for new job opportunities in the market, then you will also have to obtain a Unique Taxpayer Reference number. As stated earlier, HMRC is the issuing authority, so you will have to touch base with them. You can get a Unique Taxpayer Reference number due to the following conditions:
- You have to be responsible for accumulating your own taxation amount
- You do not have access to the same rights as a regular employed person, i.e., sick pay, holiday pay or redundancy benefits.
- You responsible for getting your own work
- You have to submit a self assessment tax return
Remember, if you do land a job and your prospective employer asks you to register and work as a self employed independent person – do assess the benefits and see if this gig is worth working in such a status.
The first thing you have to do is to register yourself for self assessment. All you have to do is fill this form with all your details, sign a printed version of it and post it to the HMRC. You will find the postal address on the form itself.
After eight weeks or so, you should expect to receive your Unique Taxpayer Reference number along with an activation code. The next step is to activate your registration with HMRC within a month or so of receiving it. We recommend doing it in less than twenty-eight days. Note that if you miss your deadline date, you’ll have to go through the entire process all over again and submit the form outlined in the step preceding this one.
The third step is to navigate your way to https://online.hmrc.gov.uk/home/services on your browser. Choose Services on your left and then scroll to Self-assessment. Enter your HMRC user id, password and Unique Taxpayer Reference number and save it. Make sure you enter it carefully as if you have two wrong attempts, then you will get locked out of your account. Surely, you do not want that now, right? Well mate, we definitely don’t want that for you J
How long does it take to get a UTR number?
Ideally, the whole process should not take more than four weeks. Of course, keep in mind, that seasonal delays, such as during the tax year or towards the end of it, could create an issue.
If you wish to check the status of your Unique Taxpayer Reference number, then all you have to do is to get in touch with your local tax office via post. Even better, give them a ring to inquire about your UTR application status.
Now, whilst you may be super excited to obtain your Unique Taxpayer Reference number, you must practice a little patience as you cannot obtain it over email or the phone.
To maintain safety and to protect your data, you can only obtain a UTR number through postal mail. Once you get it, keep it in a safe place and look after it. Your UTR number is your private property and you should only share it with authorities or companies whom you feel you can trust it with.
What is the UTR number used for?
You will need a Unique Taxpayer Reference number when you register as a self-employed individual and will need to complete a self-assessment tax return process. You will also need it whenever you conduct any form of communication with HMRC. If you decide to go ahead and hire a fiscal consultant or an accountant, you will also have to share your Unique Taxpayer Reference number with them.
What is a UTR number for a company?
Similar to a UTR number for an individual entity, a company’s UTR number is also a ten digit numeric that is issued by HMRC to all newly formed limited business ventures.
They are applied when identifying firms for taxation purposes. Whenever you pay file tax returns, pay your corporate taxes or apply for business taxes, you will need your Unique Taxpayer Reference number, so make sure you keep it handy on you.
Once you get your company UTR from HMRC, there are a few things you’ll have to send over to them. To help you out, here’s a quick list:
- Kind of business industry you’re in
- Your office address
- Company registration number and official company name
- The date your business began its trade
- Date of your annual accounts
The good thing is that you can send this information through the web and do not have to worry about posting it. Best of luck for applying for your UTR number!