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HMRC internal manual

PAYE Manual

Employer records: set up employer record: ELECT scheme - electoral payments

Note: This guidance relates to the operation of Election Schemes for tax years up to and including 2013-14. From 2014-15 onwards these schemes will operate under standard PAYE arrangements.

You will need to set up a new employer record with an ELECT scheme type when councils or local authorities make payments to individuals in respect of electoral duties. These include

  • Returning Officer
  • Acting Returning Officer
  • Presiding Officer
  • Polling Clerks
  • Counting Assistants
  • All others engaged in the conduct of public elections and referenda

For PAYE purposes the employer in electoral payment cases is the Acting Returning Officer (ARO) or his or her deputy.

When an election is called, the ARO notifies the PAYE Employer Office of the type and date of the election. The PAYE Employer Office must

  • Ascertain how many forms P527 and P528 are needed by the ARO
  • Issue them to him with a payslip
  • Use Function ISSUE / CANCEL EOY RETURN to issue a form P35(EP)

Employees can certify that they are not liable to tax by completing form P527.

Tax is suffered at basic rate by all other employees and is deducted from

  • Payments for electoral duties
  • Payment for travel between home and place where the duties are performed
  • The employer’s own pay

    • This is the amount left after payment of fees to deputies or superannuation contributions
    • This does not apply in Northern Ireland where the returning officer and deputies are civil servants

Class 1 National Insurance contributions are not due on the payments.

Each employee receives a copy of form P528 where tax is deducted. This is sufficient evidence of tax deducted if the employee wishes to claim a refund of tax overpaid

  • No forms P45, P46 or P60 are used

After the election

The ARO will send

  • Completed forms P35(EP), P527 and P528 to the Debt Management Office


  • Payment of the tax deducted to Banking Operations

Electoral Registration Officers

These employees are dealt with within the local authority’s normal PAYE scheme and deductions are made in the usual way.