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There are a number of ways agents and advisers can contact HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for transactions or to get help and support.
In most cases, you can contact HMRC by using the HMRC Online Services, by phone and in writing. In some cases you can also email your queries.
If you are an authorised agent, and you need to contact HMRC about a client's personal Self Assessment tax affairs, partnership matters, PAYE (Pay As You Earn) or tax credit claims, you can also use the Agent Dedicated or Priority Lines to save time.
This guide will show you how to perform the transaction you require, get the information you need, or find the quickest contact route if you need to get in touch with HMRC for more detailed queries. It also covers the benefits and availability of the Agent Priority and Dedicated Lines.
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If you're dealing with a client's personal tax affairs, such as Self Assessment for individuals or partnerships or individuals' PAYE (Pay As You Earn) matters, you can:
For clients who are in Self Assessment, you can:
You need to be formally authorised by your client and have registered with the Self Assessment for Agents online service to do this.
If your query is more complex or concerns a PAYE-related matter for an individual client, you can check the HMRC website to find the answer to your query.
If you can't find the answer on the HMRC website, you can call the Contact Centre that covers your client's affairs or write to HMRC - see the sections below on how to do this.
If your client is an individual under PAYE and changes their name or address, you can let HMRC know about the changes via email.
You can write to HMRC at the postal address shown on the most recent correspondence you have received from them. If HMRC hasn't written to you or your client recently, please use the following addresses.
For personal Self Assessment queries:
HM Revenue & Customs
PO Box 4000
For queries relating to PAYE for individuals:
HM Revenue & Customs
Pay As You Earn
PO Box 1970
HMRC has identified the most common Self Assessment and PAYE queries and created a list of headings that you can use when sending letters to HMRC about your clients' affairs - to help improve the time is takes to process your query.
When you can expect to get a reply
You can find out when to expect a reply to a query or request you've sent to HMRC by using the 'Where's my reply' tool. Please note: this tool covers some of the basic queries that are most popular with HMRC's customers, but there are plans to develop the tool to include more topics.
HMRC Taxes Contact Centres can deal with taxpayer-specific queries from authorised agents. By phone you can update or discuss your client's:
You can call the Contact Centre's Agent Dedicated Line on Tel 0300 200 3311. This line is open from 8.00 am to 8.00 pm Monday to Friday and 8.00 am to 4.00 pm on Saturday. It's a good idea to use this helpline instead of the general number as it provides tax agents and advisers with a full and fast service.
When you call the Agent Dedicated Line, your call will be:
Please remember that this service is for authorised agents only. If HMRC cannot verify that you are formally authorised to speak to them on your client's behalf, they will not be able to proceed with the call. For this reason, it's important that you don't give this number to your clients.
While HMRC can handle most general business, there are limits and specific exclusions to what they can do by phone.
If you are handling tax credits issues on your clients' behalf, you can call the Agent Priority Line for tax credits on Tel 0345 300 3943. This line is open from 8.00 am to 8.00 pm Monday to Friday and 8.00 am to 4.00 pm on Saturday. This line is for agents only.
Calls to this number will be routed to one Contact Centre site. When the call comes through to the Contact Centre, it is identified as an agent call and advisers will have the relevant guidance for verifying and dealing with agents to hand. This should ensure a more efficient service for you when managing your client's tax credits affairs.
If your client's claim is closed down due to a family breakdown and a new record is created, please call the Agent Priority Line to make sure your agent details are transferred to the new claim.
Please note: if your client has a new partner who also wants you to act for them, they must complete form 64-8 before HMRC can discuss both parts of the claim with you.
If, when you contact HMRC, the Contact Centre can't see an agent authority on your client's claim, they will refer your case to a specialist team who will investigate the matter further. Where the specialist team can find your authority it will be restored to the claim within 48 hours. You will be asked to call back after this time in order to continue with your request. Where HMRC can't trace the agent authority, you will be given further advice about what to do next. You may be asked to complete a new form 64-8.
You can deal with PAYE for employers and Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) issues:
You can also ask specific PAYE for employers queries via email.
When you're authorised by clients to manage their PAYE or CIS responsibilities, you can use the HMRC PAYE Online for Agents service to:
If you have a query, you may be able to find the answer on the HMRC website.
If you have a specific query that you can't answer through the HMRC website, you can use the dedicated helplines for employers or CIS.
For advice on PAYE matters for businesses starting to take on employees call the New Employer Helpline.
For expert advice for established employers on issues such as PAYE, statutory sick pay, maternity pay, and CIS call the Employer Helpline.
For guidance on managing CIS call the CIS Helpline.
If you have a query about starting or finishing the tax year or statutory payments, you can email HMRC and you will receive a reply within two working days.
Remember that emailing HMRC through these links is secure, but the nature of email means the reply to you is not. Therefore the email reply will not contain confidential information. If they need to, HMRC will email you to explain that they will be replying fully by letter or phone.
If you are authorised by your client and registered with the HMRC Corporation Tax for Agents online service, you can use it to:
If your query is more complex, you can phone or write to the office that handles your client's Corporation Tax. You can find the address and phone number on any letters HMRC have written to you about your client. Alternatively, you can find your client's Corporation Tax Office through the Contact Us tool.
For VAT, Excise and International Trade issues, you can contact or transact with HMRC:
depending on the nature of your enquiry.
You can use HMRC's VAT Online Services for agents to register clients for VAT and manage their VAT affairs.
From 1 April 2010, most clients have to submit their VAT Returns online and pay VAT electronically.
If you have any clients who can still submit paper returns, and you've chosen not to submit them online, you should send their completed returns to:
HM Revenue & Customs
VAT Central Unit
If exceptionally you need to use a courier service to deliver your clients' returns, please use the following address:
HM Revenue & Customs
Southend on Sea
If you need advice on VAT, you can check the HMRC website for guidance.
If you require guidance on specific issues, you can:
Choose from the links below to email your VAT question to HMRC.
Follow the link below to find general guidance on the best way to contact HMRC with your VAT questions.
If you need advice on Customs, International Trade & Excise issues, you can check the HMRC website for guidance.
You can also phone, email or write to HMRC.
Contact the Online Services Helpdesk if you're having technical problems using the following agents' online services:
Contact the VAT Online Services Helpdesk if you're having technical problems with the following VAT online services for agents:
If you encounter problems with any aspect of HMRC service, there are escalation and complaints schemes in each area of the business. Check with the office you have been dealing with to find out more about how you can escalate an issue or make a complaint.
Sometimes you may need guidance from specialist teams within HMRC, such as:
You can find contact details for specialist departments or any other part of HMRC by using the Contact Us tool.
HMRC has set up a UK-wide team of Agent Account Managers (AAMs) to help tax agents and advisers deal with the department more effectively.