The IT Zone guide to payroll services and software - 2008 update

A catalogue of payroll providers and points to watch in 2008 prepared by technology editor John Stokdyk.

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thepayrollsite's picture

Online filing of P45 and P46 - inside track

thepayrollsite | | Permalink

I am a member of various payroll specialist groups, so I am privy to certain technical details relating to online filing. We use this to guide the development of our online payroll service.

There is no penalty for failing to send these forms electronically until the last quarter of 2009/10, which technically means that nobody is compelled to do it until 6th January 2010. Even then, no penalty is due for the first 5 items that you fail to file. The details are in Statutory Instrument 2007 No 2969.

HMRC have scheduled some changes to these electronic forms in April 2008, October 2008 and April 2009, each of which carries the risk of teething problems. If you use an installed software product to file these returns, you may have to upgrade it for each of these changes.

There are also a few instances where you won't be able to use these forms. HMRC's current position is that you will only be able to file these forms in the same tax year as the relevant starting or leaving date - for example, if an employee starts on 5th April, you will need to file their P45 or P46 electronically before midnight that day. If you can't do that, you'll need to send it in on paper. I expect they'll take a closer look at this policy in the next year or so.

I understand from HMRC's staff that there is currently a widespread problem of large numbers of employers who don't send in any forms P45 or P46. Once the penalties come in, this could keep HMRC very busy for a while.

By all means, you may choose to file these forms electronically before the penalties come in, but you may need to occasionally use the paper forms. The paper forms are also changing in April 2008, October 2008 and April 2009.

payroll software

egbell | | Permalink

I have been using Moneysoft since last April & have found it really excellent.Not only is it inexpensive but also easy to use.It has CIS built in & online filing of P45/P46 already. I can also send payslips & summaries as pdf documents..Frankly,I cannot think why anyone would want to use more expensive packages