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New rules for registering as self employed

17th Aug 2009
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To combat potential fraud, HMRC will no longer register an individual as self-employed unless they can provide an NI number.

This may be a problem for those trying to register at the last minute to avoid a late notification penalty (you must register with HMRC within three months from the end of the month in which you start trading).

National Insurance numbers are handed out by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) and can be obtained by contacting your local Jobcentre Plus.

Those who have lost their NI number should contact HMRC’s National Insurance office:
National Insurance Contributions Office
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE98 1ZZ

Telephone: 0191 213 5000
See for more details.



Replies (7)

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By pnown
17th Aug 2009 11:42

3 month rule and Class 2
My understanding was that "the 3 month rule which was imposed regarding Class 2 " otherwise there was a £100 penalty
no longer applies as such.
SI 2009 No 600 states that a person should register immediately( but does not define that) for Class 2 form 6 April 2009 .
The penalty position is then
Penalty for failure to notify
87B.—(1) A penalty is payable by P where—
(a) P becomes liable to pay a Class 2 contribution;
(b) P fails to comply with the requirement to notify in accordance with regulation
87A(1); and
(c) notification has not been made by 31st January following the end of the year(a) in
which P became liable to pay a Class 2 contribution.

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Nichola Ross Martin
By Nichola Ross Martin
18th Aug 2009 10:39

Yes, quite right.
The old penalty system ran up until 5 April 2009.

From 6 April, HMRC's new tax penalty system applies, and you must notify liabilty by 31 January following commencment.
No penalties if you can find a reasonable excuse for failing to notify on time, other than that penalties will range from 30% to 100% of the lost NI contributions.
Obviously, the new tax penalty also applies to any tax which is overdue as a result of failing to file a tax return too.

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By sheltonj
18th Aug 2009 11:07

Is it?
Is this not an insertion after Regulation 87? In which case the 3 month penalty still applies, but this is a further tax related penalty incurred above that.

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By gavinfernandes
19th Aug 2009 13:39

registering by telephone for self employment
I have found it strange that it is so easy to register as self employed via telephone. Surely it would be preferable and more secure to restrict registration to via the internet or in person at a local HMRC tax office?
Gavin Fernandes ACA, CTA -

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By Simon Oates
21st Aug 2009 15:08

Register by telephone???
It may be easy for a client to register as self employed by telephone but an agent is no longer allowed to do this for an existing client. I have just tried and been told that this is because the Revenue want a clients opinon/viewpoint of their business - not an accountants. Therefore the only way to register a client as self employed is to submit a CWF1 by post - what viewpoint do the Revenue get from this??

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By ChickPea
21st Aug 2009 15:55

NI Numbers
I've never understood why NI numbers are not issued at birth- in fact, why do we have a NINO and an NHS number? I know NINOs are supposed to be unique, but they do [***] up from time to time. A friend of mine had a terrible time when she took maternity leave; it turned out that on the day that she was born, another girl was born in the same hospital, and was given exactly the same name (forenames and surname). They were both, at age 18 or so, given the same NINO, as someone failed to spot that they were separate people. It took many, many months to unravel the contributions history and give one of them a new NINO.

If a NINO were issued when the birth was registered, it would be simpler.

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By John R
11th Sep 2009 17:44

So is there still a £100 penalty?

Nichola - what do you think about the comment by SheltonJ who suggests that there is a £100 penalty in addition to the NI related penalty?

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