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HMRC no longer giving PAYE ref no's over phone

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Had heard about this on another forum but had cause to put it to the test today.   Client was in urgent need of PAYE ref no for new business as he is takingon an apprentice and needs it to join the scheme.  Lady was very good and set it up on phone so I thought she was going to give me the no's.  She then said, you know we can't give out the codes over the phone any more don't you?  Apparently this came into play on 17th December. 

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By Hugo Fair
17th Jan 2022 23:04

https://www.gov.uk/register-employer makes no reference (pardon pun!) to a new process ... but does say:
"You must register before the first payday. It can take up to 5 working days to get your employer PAYE reference number. You cannot register more than 2 months before you start paying people."

It also suggests that in order "To pay an employee before you get your employer PAYE reference number, you can run Payroll but 'store'(i.e. hold back) the FPS - and send it later as a 'ate FPS submission"!

However none of that helps if your client needs the value for a different purpose (registering within an apprentice scheme) ... but hopefully the pack will arrive (via the post) within a week.

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ALISK
By atleastisoundknowledgable...
17th Jan 2022 23:37

We discovered this a couple of weeks ago. Presumably there’s now no time difference from doing it online, which is I assume the point of the change in policy.

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By SteveHa
18th Jan 2022 08:39

One wonders exactly what threat to confidentiality or GDPR there is in providing a PAYE reference number over the phone.

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By legerman
18th Jan 2022 16:59

SteveHa wrote:

One wonders exactly what threat to confidentiality or GDPR there is in providing a PAYE reference number over the phone.

The lady on the phone said it was something to do with fraud, although I'm struggling to see how.

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Replying to legerman:
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By Hugo Fair
18th Jan 2022 17:39

Well there's always the risk that someone wants to pay your client's PAYE liabilities without informing him of this munificence! :=)

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Replying to legerman:
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By Leywood
18th Jan 2022 19:40

Why did you not challenge her about that then? If HMRC staff keep talking carp over the phone and no-one challenges them, then things will never improve.

I would have also asked at what point and how did HMRC notify agents or indeed the public of this new ridiculousness.

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