Real Time Information: What you need to know
With the Real Time Information (RTI) pilot under way, Diana Bruce from the CIPP presents an overview of the new PAYE regime and the changes you will need to consider ahead of full implementation in 2013.
By law all employers will have to submit RTI to HMRC by October 2013. This will mean reporting information to HMRC every time they pay their employees instead of summiting a summary form at the end of the tax year. Payroll software will collect the necessary information and send it to HMRC online.
The pilot project that started on 11 April will give HMRC, employers and software companies a controlled environment in which to iron out any problems over the next 18 months before filing becomes mandatory.
- If you use payroll software, you will need to ensure it can submit RTI data. Check with your supplier.
- If you don’t use software, start planning now to get a system that will be able to submit data RTI electronically when you have to.
- Firms with nine or fewer employees can use HMRC's free Basic PAYE Tools. A new version will be available once you are invited to operate RTI.
- If you pay your employees by BACS, you will need to include the hash cross references in your RTI submissions. Check with your BACS supplier or bureau.
- Once you begin to operate RTI, you may incur penalties if you do not submit your PAYE data to HMRC on time.
During the first month of the pilot, HMRC will work with 10 employers, representing a range of size, type and payroll software provider. The plan is to bring another 1,300 volunteer employers into the system by September 2012, expanding to 250,000 by March 2013.
RTI will become mandatory for all other employers, without exception, from April 2013 through to October 2013. The Department of Work and Pensions is driving the “all on board” timeline of October 2013 because RTI will have to be used employers by this date to support the introduction of Universal Credits.
Main changes for PAYE under RTI
All employers and pension providers will send details of all payments made (or to be made) through the payroll irrespective of the amount of pay (or pension). There are three main changes that will happen under RTI:
- Employers will be required to send information to HMRC about employees’ pay and deductions before or at the same time as they are paid by way of a Full Payment Submission (FPS).
- The year end process of submitting P14s for all employees and a P35 summary and employer declaration will no longer be required.
- Employers will retain new starter forms P45 and P46 but will not be required to send them to HMRC. The P46(Expat) form ceases and the future of the P46(Pen) is also currently under consideration.
While no employers will be exempt from RTI, a small number who are exempt from online reporting and filing will have to comply with a slightly different set of RTI requirements.
RTI help and support
Guidance is still being drafted but it is hoped that final versions will be available by October 2012. Follow the links below for further information.
- Expert guide: the nuts and bolts of RTI
- HMRC RTI homepage
- CIPP News Pages
- HMRC Payroll Alignment
- HMRC RTI Data items
- HMRC FAQs
- HMRC Data Quality homepage
- Welfare reform and Universal Credit
- Register for e-alerts through Business Link or HMRC