Employee doesn't have a form P45

You must use the right tax code for new employees and report their details to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) via a Full Payment Submission (FPS) the first time you pay them.

Usually you will get this information from your new employee's form P45 from their previous employer. There may be occasions when your new employee won't be able to give you a P45.

This guide shows you what you need to do to set up a new employee and how to report to HMRC on the FPS if your new employee doesn't have a P45.

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Information you need from your new employee if they don't have form P45

If your new employee doesn't have a P45, you need to obtain from them their:

  • full name
  • gender
  • date of birth
  • full address (including postcode)
  • National Insurance number (if the employee knows it)

Make sure the information you get from your new employee is accurate (National Insurance number, full name, gender and date of birth) as this is used by HMRC to match a new employment to the individual's PAYE record.

If your new employee doesn't know their National Insurance number, you can ask them for an old payslip or form P60. If they can't give you any of these, you can use HMRC's National Insurance Number Verification service.

Making sure you use the correct National Insurance number

New Starter questions if your new employee doesn't have a form P45

If your new employee doesn't have a P45, you must:

  • get them to declare their employment situation when they join
  • find out if you need to deduct student loan repayments from their pay

You need these details to work out what tax code to use.

In the declaration, you ask the new employee to declare which one of the following applies to their situation:

A. This is their first job since last 6 April and they have not been receiving taxable Jobseeker's Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance, taxable Incapacity Benefit, state pension or occupational pension.

B. This is their only job, but since last 6 April they have had another job, or have received taxable Jobseeker's Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance or taxable Incapacity Benefit. They do not receive state or occupational pension.

C. They have another job or receive a state or occupational pension.

You must keep a written record of their answers and report this information to HMRC on your FPS. HMRC has a Starter Checklist you can use but this form, or any other records you keep, must not be sent to HMRC. You must keep your records for the current and previous three tax years.

Find the optional form Starter Checklist

PAYE Record Keeping

Student loan repayments

You must also ask your new employee to confirm if they left a course of UK Higher Education before last 6 April and received their first student loan instalment on or after 1 September 1998. You also need to find out if they have not fully repaid their student loan (but you don't need to know about loans being repaid by agreement with the UK Student Loans Company by monthly Direct Debit from a bank or building society account).

If your new employee says 'yes' to the student loan question, you should start making student loan deductions from their pay.

Student loan deductions

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Using the right tax code for new employees without a form P45

You will need to decide which tax code to use for your new employee's first payday by using your new employee's answer to the New Starter questions (above). Use the code number for the letter A, B or C from the table below depending on your new employee's answer.

Starting statement

Tax code to use

A

1000L cumulative

B

1000L on a week 1/month 1 basis

C

BR cumulative

Employee does not complete starter declaration

0T week1/month1

Your new employee confirms they have a student loan

Start making student loan deductions from the next payday

Understanding employee tax codes

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Sending starter information to HMRC - FPS

You must send details of new employees to HMRC when you make your first payment to the employee. You do this by including them on the first FPS you make after they join.

You can set up new employees on your payroll before you make your first payment to them once you have gathered all the information above - you only need to report their details when you first pay them.

It's important to remember that on your first FPS that includes your new employee you must:

  • enter the tax code you are using based on the starter questions
  • include your employee's employment situation - statement A, B or C

You can find out more details about the payroll data you need to report by following the link below.

What payroll information to report

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If your employee hasn't provided a P45 or starter information before their first payday

If your new employee hasn't provided a P45 or given you the information before their first payday, you must still complete an FPS including the new employee, using as much information as you know.

You must

  • use tax code 0T on a week 1/month 1 basis if you don't have the information by the time of your new employee's first payday and
  • enter statement 'C' on the FPS.

It's a good idea for you to let your new employee know that this will mean they may pay more tax than necessary on their first payday - but they can avoid this by providing the information in time.

Ask them to contact HMRC if they think you are operating the wrong tax code.

How to report your payroll information

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If your employee gives you a P45 or starter information after your first FPS for them

Sometimes your new employee may give you a P45 or provide starter information after you have made your first FPS that includes them. If this happens, you can find out what to do in the guide 'Notifying and getting new employee information right'.

Notifying and getting new employee information right

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More useful links

Find contact details for HMRC's New Employer Helpline (if you have fewer than three years payroll experience)

Find contact for HMRC's Employer Helpline (if you have more than three years payroll experience)

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