It’s almost a year since RTI (Real Time Information) came into operation and employers have been reporting their payroll information routinely to HMRC each time payments are made to employees.
The first year was “fine free”, so late returns and other mistakes have gone unsanctioned for this year’s payrolls.
This honeymoon period is due to end on 6 April – but professional bodies and others in the payroll discipline are calling for it to be extended. The argument is that there are still too many problems with RTI at HMRC and the automated penalties would cause chaos as many will be contested by employers.
RTI seems to have gone fairly smoothly in general, although if you scratch beneath the surface there is more to it. HMRC’s Generic Notifications (available on all PAYE schemes, just like tax code and student loan notices) can let you know if there is a problem. For example, if HMRC think any of your FPS’s were submitted late, they will have issued one of these notices. You can check them through HMRC’s PAYE Desktop Viewer, available from their website: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/payerti/tools/pdv/
We’ve been checking this for all of our payroll bureau clients, and have found a number of instances where late filing notices have been issued incorrectly. There are also some which are valid – the file was submitted late, because clients didn’t authorise the FPS in time.
We’ll be emphasising these issues to our clients in the next couple of months, but meanwhile, perhaps you should check your own position, so that you can iron out any problems before the fines take effect.
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