Avoid last minute RTI rush, employers told

Tax chiefs have issued a new year call to employers, urging them to ensure they are ready for major PAYE changes that come into effect in three months’ time.

In April 2013, employers will have to start sending PAYE returns electronically, using Real Time Information (RTI)-enabled payroll software, to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) each time they pay employees as part of routine payroll processes.

The returns will include details of all employees’ pay, tax and deductions and replace sending a separate return at the end of the year.

Ruth Owen, HMRC’s director general, personal tax, said on 2 January: “To avoid a last minute rush, it’s vital employers act now, if they have not already done so.

“Although reporting PAYE in real time will be straightforward for most, some preparation is needed. There is more to it than simply buying or updating software – although this is key. Employers may need to add employees such as casuals or those below the Lower Earnings Limit to their payroll system and must think about their payroll practices to make sure that they work for real time reporting.”

Under the new regime, employers will need to send their first return – called a Full Payment Submission, or FPS – for the first salary or wage payments made to employees on or after 6 April 2013. If they have 250 or more employees, they will have to send an Employer Alignment Submission before the first FPS.

HMRC said key steps for employers included to talking to their payroll service provider or payroll software provider and starting to check employee information and ensure it is up-to-date.

Link: Real Time Information