In this section:

Business changes - how and when to report them to HMRC

It's important that you keep HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) informed of key changes that take place within your business - to ensure that both you and the business pay the right amount of tax at the right time.

You'll need to inform all the relevant parts of HMRC to ensure you don't get demands for tax you don't owe.

This guide explains how to report key changes at the right time.

On this page:

Reporting a change of name or address

If you change your name, business name or your personal or trading address which parts of HMRC you will need to inform – and how you can do this - will depend on:

  • what type of business structure you have (and whether or not you're a company director)
  • whether or not you're registered for VAT
  • whether or not you have employees
  • whether you have a Business Tax Dashboard for your business

If you have an HMRC Online Business Tax Dashboard

You will be able to use the Business Tax Dashboard to change some of the contact details HMRC holds for your business. The dashboard can show details for up to three business taxes:

  • Corporation Tax or Self Assessment
  • PAYE for employers
  • VAT

If you don't have a Business Tax Dashboard you can update your details - using the links below - on the relevant HMRC Online Service page.

You can no longer set up a Business Tax Dashboard as a new service called ‘Your tax account’ is currently being trialled to replace it.

If you're self-employed or a partner in a partnership

If you've registered for the Self Assessment Online service, you can use it to change your name or address details, or the name and address details for your partnership.

Log in to Self Assessment Online

Alternatively you can contact HMRC, either by phone or in writing.

Find income tax contact details for self-employed

If your business is a limited company or an organisation liable for Corporation Tax

You can let HMRC know about a change to your contact or postal address (but not your registered office address) using the Corporation Tax Online service or in writing to your Corporation Tax Office.

Log in to Corporation Tax Online

Find your Corporation Tax Office

If your registered office address has changed, you must let Companies House know and then inform your Corporation Tax Office.

Go to the Companies House website (Opens new window)

Find your Corporation Tax Office

If your business is registered for VAT

If you use the VAT Online service, you can log in and change your name, trading name or address details.

Log in to VAT Online

Alternatively you can write to HMRC. For contact details and the necessary forms, follow the link below.

Whichever method you choose, you must do this within 30 days or you may have to pay a penalty.

Changes to your business details and your VAT registration

If you have employees

If you have employees and run a PAYE scheme, you can update your business's details using the PAYE Online service or you can write to your employer Tax Office.

Log in to PAYE Online

Find your employer Tax Office

If you're a contractor or subcontractor under the Construction Industry Scheme

If you're a contractor or subcontractor under the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS), you must call the CIS Helpline and let them know about your change of name, trading name, company or personal address as soon as possible.

Construction Industry Scheme Helpline

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Changing your business's legal structure - sole traders, partnerships and limited companies

If you decide to change your business's legal structure it is important you let all the relevant areas of HMRC know. For example, to keep your tax affairs in order if you're a sole trader or partnership and you want to make your business a limited company, you'll have to inform a number of areas of HMRC.

If your business becomes a limited company

If you decide that you want to change your business structure to a limited company, you need to register with Companies House first. You'll also need to tell HMRC, file Company Tax Returns and pay Corporation Tax.

Getting started with Corporation Tax

If you were previously a sole trader or a partner in a business partnership, you'll need to complete a tax return for the year you stopped trading and started a new company.

If the partnership is ending, the nominated partner will have to fill in a tax return covering the period until the partnership ends.

Tax returns for partners and partnerships

Tax returns for the self-employed

If you change your business status from a sole trader to a limited company you will also need to deregister as self-employed and stop paying self-employed Class 2 National Insurance contributions. You can do this by calling HMRC's self-employed helpline.

National Insurance for the self-employed – contact details

If you're a sole trader or partnership which hasn't previously employed anyone and are now starting a limited company of which you will be a director then you will be an employee of the company. This means you will have to register as an employer and set up and run a PAYE scheme. The scheme will also cover any other employees you take on.

Register as an employer

If you have already been running a PAYE scheme as a sole trader or partnership, you will need to set up a new scheme for your limited company. You will be provided with a new employer PAYE reference number. You can get more advice from your employer Tax Office.

Find your employer Tax Office

If you're a company director you'll need to complete a Self Assessment tax return each year (unless you're a director of a non-profit organisation, for example a charity, and don't receive any payments or benefits).

Find out more about Self Assessment

If you close your limited company and become a sole trader

If your business has previously been a limited company, you'll need to wind up or make dormant your limited company.

Selling or closing your company and Corporation Tax

Trading and non-trading for Corporation Tax explained

If you've been running a PAYE scheme, you'll need to let your employer Tax Office know about the change of your business's legal structure.

Find your employer Tax Office

You'll need to register your business with HMRC. You do this by registering for Self Assessment. HMRC will then set up tax and National Insurance records for you.

Register for Self Assessment

Tax returns for the self-employed

If your business becomes a partnership

You'll need to register with HMRC - you do this by registering for Self Assessment. Both the partnership and each individual partner need to register. HMRC will then set up tax records and National Insurance records (if needed) for the partnership and partners.

Find out how to register for Self Assessment

Tax returns for partners and partnerships

If you've been running a PAYE scheme, you'll need to let your employer Tax Office know about the change of your business's legal structure.

Find your employer Tax Office

If your business was previously a limited company, you'll need to wind it up or make it dormant.

More about making your company or organisation dormant

Selling or closing your company and Corporation Tax

If you change your business's legal structure and you are already registered for VAT

You will need to either cancel your VAT registration and re-register or transfer your existing registration. You must let HMRC know within 30 days of making the change, otherwise you may have to pay a financial penalty.

Changes to your business details and your VAT registration

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Reporting changes to partnerships

If your partnership is VAT-registered you must inform HMRC within 30 days of someone joining or leaving the partnership. To do this, use form VAT 2 Value Added Tax – Partnership details. If the partnership isn't VAT-registered there is no need to notify HMRC in this way. However see below about providing this information on relevant tax returns.

Get form VAT 2 Value Added Tax – Partnership details

Changes to your business details and your VAT registration

If you join or leave a partnership, this will need to be reflected in both your personal tax return and the tax return for the partnership itself.

Tax returns for partners and partnerships

Remember that in some circumstances, joining or leaving a partnership will result in a change to how the partnership's assets are divided. This may mean that you are liable to pay Capital Gains Tax on the disposal (or part-disposal) and you will need to reflect this in both your personal and the partnership's tax returns.

Capital Gains Tax on business assets: the basics

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Closing or selling a business

If you decide to close or sell your business, you'll need to inform several areas within HMRC. It's a good idea to do this as quickly as possible, as it will keep your tax affairs in order and prevent HMRC from asking you for money that you may not owe.

Closing or selling your business

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Appointing an accountant or payroll bureau

If you wish to appoint an accountant or payroll bureau to handle your business's tax affairs, you'll need to formally authorise them to deal with HMRC on your behalf. Your accountant or payroll bureau can start this process for you using HMRC's Online Agent Authorisation Service, or you can fill in and return a paper form 64-8.

Authorising an accountant to deal with HM Revenue & Customs for you

Go to form 64-8

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More useful links

Self Assessment

Changes to your business details for Corporation Tax

Changing or cancelling your VAT registration

How to report changes or cancel your Money Laundering Regulations registration

Companies House website (Opens new window)

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