Bank, Building Society and Other Interest returns - Changes between 2015 to 2016 notes and 2016 to 2017 versions

Details of the main changes between the 2015 to 2016 and the 2016 to 2017 versions of the guidance notes for reporting Bank and Building Society Interest (BBSI) and Other Interest (OI) to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Changes to the list of Fully Reportable (FR) countries

The BBSI and OI returns contain data about people who live in the United Kingdom and the FR countries. This will change as the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) system starts operating over the next few years. Data collection for the calendar year CRS returns began on 1 January 2016 for about 40 countries and a further set will start collecting CRS data on 1 January 2017. All the current FR countries fall into one of these two groups so the reporting of FR residents will end with a final report in the UK tax year to 5 April 2017. The full but reducing lists of FR countries are in the Fully Reportable Countries section.

End of EUSD/SIR reporting

The last EU Savings Directive or Savings Income Reporting return will be for the tax year to 5 April 2016. At present the return specifications for BBSI and OI each have a provision to also allow reporting of EUSD data. These provisions will continue until at least tax year 2017 to 2018 reporting. At that time we will probably reduce the BBSI and OI returns to cut out the EUSD sections. This warning is given so that financial institutions have as much warning as possible of the changes. The specifications and spreadsheets in current use have contingencies (rules) for completing the EUSD parts of the return where you have nothing to report. You should continue to use these rules over the next two years.

Change of website to GOV.UK

This is the first year of complete operation on the GOV.UK website. HMRC have therefore taken up the GOV.UK style of referring to ‘HMRC’ or ‘they’ instead of ‘we’ in all the guidance notes going forward. This fits better for a combined government website where it might not be clear who was being referred to if each government department called itself ‘we’.

Data encryption

Continues to be at the forefront of what HMRC does. The FAQs and Returns Bulletin, currently number 9, has been revised to remove the ongoing situation information as it goes out of date over the time period that the notes remain on the webpage. The latest information, as provided by the Bulletin, is published as and when necessary. HMRC cannot insist that data transfers are encrypted but the Data Protection Act puts the responsibility for security firmly on the sender of the data until it is received at its intended destination.

Deeply Discounted Securities reporting still not required

HMRC has the power to ask for more information than they currently do about this type of investment. They are not using that power this year. If, in the future, HMRC chooses to increase the amount of information that they want you to put on your return they will announce that widely. Until then, the amount of information needed about deeply discounted securities will remain as per section 4 of the guidance notes.

National Insurance numbers

Schedule 23 to Finance Act 2011 relies on further regulations to make a complete system of possible returns. These further regulations are called the Data-gathering Powers (Relevant Data) Regulations 2012. They contain provisions for HMRC to require National Insurance numbers for accounts opened from 6 April 2013 onwards. As previously reported in Revenue and Customs Brief 39/12, HMRC still does not to require you to report new National Insurance number information on accounts opened from that date. The guidance notes contain a fuller explanation of what existing reporting is still required. If in the future, HMRC increases the amount of information required on your return they will announce that widely.

Published 1 June 2016