Guidance

Pension scheme administrators: how to pay tax

Find out how to pay charges on payments from registered pension schemes and the time it takes for payments to reach HMRC.

As a pension scheme administrator of a registered pension scheme you must send pension schemes reports and pay tax charges to HMRC.

Reporting and making payments on charges arising from your Accounting for Tax Return

The deadline for reporting and paying the tax charges is the same.

Tax period Filing and payment deadline
1 January to 31 March 15 May
1 April to 30 June 14 August
1 July to 30 September 14 November
1 October to 31 December 14 February

Reporting events and making payments on charges arising from your Event Report

If a reportable event occurs within a tax year, you must submit your event report by 31 January following the end of the tax year when the event occurred. If a scheme has been wound up you must submit the Event Report within 3 months of the date the scheme wound up or by 31 January deadline, whichever is earlier.

If the event that you’ve reported is an unauthorised payment, HMRC will also raise an assessment for the scheme sanction charge. The amount of the scheme sanction charge depends on whether the unauthorised payments charge has been paid either by the member or by the scheme administrator if the member has agreed to the mandating procedure.

You’ll have 30 days from the date we issue the assessment notice, to pay the scheme sanction charge, if you have not already done so. Late payment penalties become payable if the tax still has not been paid 30 days after the due date.

Interest will be charged if the scheme sanction charge is not paid by 31 January following the tax year in which the charge arose.

To avoid or minimise interest being charged scheme administrators can make payments on account.

If the member has completed and signed the mandate, you’ll also be required to pay the unauthorised payments charge on their behalf.

Pay now

How much time to allow when paying HMRC

Make sure you pay HMRC by the deadline or you may have to pay a penalty.

The time you need to allow depends on how you pay.

Payment method Time allowance
Online or telephone banking (Faster Payments) Same or next day
Bacs 3 working days
CHAPS Same or next day
Government Banking Service Same or next day
Online debit or corporate credit card Same or next day
At your bank or building society Same or next day
By cheque through the post 3 working days

If the deadline is on a weekend or bank holiday, make sure your payment reaches HMRC on the last working day before (unless you’re paying by Faster Payments).

Ways to pay

Bank details for online or telephone banking, Bacs, CHAPS

You can pay by Faster Payments, Bacs or CHAPS to HMRC’s account.

Sort code Account number Account name
08 32 10 12001020 HMRC Shipley

Find out what reference to use if you’re making a payment.

Your payment may be delayed if you use the wrong reference number.

Payments by:

  • Faster Payments (online or telephone banking) usually reach HMRC on the same or next day, including weekends and bank holidays
  • Bacs usually take 3 working days
  • CHAPS usually reach HMRC the same working day if you pay within your bank’s processing times

Overseas payments

As the scheme administrator of a registered pension scheme you should use these details to pay from an overseas account.

Bank identifier code (BIC) / Swift code Account number (IBAN) Account name
BARCGB22 GB03 BARC 2011 4783 9776 92 HMRC Shipley

If you need to give your bank HMRC’s banking address it is:

Barclays Bank Plc
1 Churchill Place
London
United Kingdom
E14 5HP

If you’re the manager of an overseas pension scheme you should contact HMRC before paying the overseas transfers charge.

The Government Banking Service (GBS)

Employers such as government departments and health authorities who have a GBS account can pay using the GBS online service.

If you enter HMRC’s GBS account details incorrectly there may be a delay updating your record, or your payment may not reach HMRC.

As long as you make a payment by the GBS deadline it will reach HMRC on the same day.

Online debit or corporate credit card

You can pay by debit or corporate credit card.

There’s a non-refundable fee if you pay by corporate credit or corporate debit card.

There’s no fee if you pay by personal debit card.

You cannot pay by personal credit card.

If you’re unable to make full payment by credit or debit card you’ll have to pay a different way.

Find out what reference to use if you’re making a payment.

Your payment may be delayed if you use the wrong reference number.

HMRC will accept your payment on the date you make it and not the date it reaches HMRC’s account, including on bank holidays and weekends.

Making a card payment - getting your details correct

We have recently made some changes as part of HMRC’s commitment to ensuring the security of online payments. Customers need to make sure the details they are entering are correct and match those held by your bank/card provider, for example, the billing address should be the one to which your card is currently registered.

At your bank or building society

You’ll need to order a payslip from HMRC to pay this way. It can take up to 10 days to arrive. Use another method if you need to pay before then.

You can order a payslip by writing to HMRC.

Pension Schemes Services
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1GH

Use the payslips to pay at your own bank or building society. You can pay by cash or cheque made payable to ‘HM Revenue and Customs only’. Find out what reference to use if you’re making a payment.

Your payment may be delayed if you use the wrong reference number.

HMRC will accept your payment on the date you make it and not the date it reaches HMRC’s account, if you pay between Monday and Friday.

By cheque through the post

You’ll need to order a payslip from HMRC to pay this way. It can take up to 10 working days for them to arrive. Use another method if you need to pay before then.

Send your payslip and a cheque made payable to ‘HM Revenue and Customs only’. Find out what reference to use if you’re making a payment.

Do not fold the payslip or cheque and do not fasten them together.

You should allow 3 working days for your payment to reach HMRC. Send your cheque to:

HM Revenue and Customs
Direct
BX5 5BD

You do not need to include a street name, city name or PO box with this address.

If you’re paying by post, you can include a letter with your payment to ask for a receipt from HMRC.

What reference to use if you’re making a payment

AFT

If you submit your AFT return through the Pension Schemes Online service, your 14-character charge reference will be on your online receipt. You should use this when making AFT payments.

If you submit your AFT return through the Managing Pension Schemes service, you can find your charge reference and other financial information in the ‘payments and charges’ screen for each return you have submitted.

Event report

You will not receive a charge reference when you submit your Event Report on Pension Schemes Online but you can make a payment on account using the PSTR for the scheme. If you need to submit an Event Report through the Managing Pension Schemes service we can tell you how to submit this and pay the charges. Contact HMRC by email at: pensions.businessdelivery@hmrc.gov.uk.

Payments on account

You should use a charge reference when making a payment so we can make sure the payment is properly allocated.

If you need to make a payment on account, you must quote the PSTR for the scheme, or the accounts reference for your scheme if we have previously provided you with this.

If you make a payment using your PSTR, you must contact us so we can make sure the payment is allocated correctly.

Incorrect references

Your payment may be delayed if you use the wrong reference number.

Published 30 October 2014
Last updated 30 October 2020 + show all updates
  1. Information about a non-refundable fee for corporate debit cards has been updated.

  2. Where to find a charge reference on the Managing Pension Scheme service and using a charge reference when making a payment on account has been updated.

  3. Information about a non-refundable fee for corporate debit cards being introduced from the 1 November 2020 has been added.

  4. Information about contacting us for a charge reference and when using your pension scheme tax reference (PSTR) to make a payment has been added.

  5. Welsh translation has been added.

  6. Sections about reporting and making payments on charges arising from your Accounting for Tax Return or Event and what reference to use if you’re making a payment, have been added to the guidance.

  7. Guidance on paying by cheque through the post has been updated.

  8. Guide updated to show payments can't be made with a personal credit card.

  9. Payments can no longer be made at a Post Office.

  10. Guidance updated to show it won't be possible to make a payment with a personal credit card from 13 January 2018.

  11. Guidance updated to show it won't be possible to pay at the Post Office from 15 December 2017.

  12. Information about payments at a Post Office from December 2017 has been added to the guide.

  13. Change of address for ordering payslips.

  14. Guidance has been updated to advise that all Post Offices don't accept payment by cheque.

  15. Credit card fees have changed.

  16. Overseas payment details updated.

  17. The pay by cheque through the post address has changed to HM Revenue and Customs, Direct, BX5 5BD.

  18. Notification that from 1 January 2016 changes will be introduced to limit the number of credit and debit card payments that can be made to any single tax regime within a given period.

  19. The online debit or credit card non-refundable fee has been increased to 1.5%.

  20. HMRC have launched a new payment service - you may be directed to WorldPay if you pay online by debit or credit card. The new service uses a different service provider to BillPay.

  21. Pension scheme administrators can pay tax owing to HM Revenue and Customs at the Post Office (up to a maximum of £10,000)

  22. First published.