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HMRC internal manual

PAYE Manual

Employer records: maintain employer record: filing

This subject is presented as follows


Storing information

Most employer related information will be stored on the EBS computer system. Any information relating to the employer should be added to the employer notes facility using Function AMEND EMPLOYER NOTES. Where it is necessary to keep a paper copy of the information this will be stored in one of the following filing ranges.

Within each office there will be

  • A run of employer record (ER) pads

These will include a range for each of the following

* The current tax year


* Sufficient full tax years to ensure the 3 year retention period is fulfilled
  • Annual runs of P35 returns
  • Annual runs of forms P11D(b)
  • Annual runs of forms P14


  • Papers held by employer compliance

You must ensure that all papers are replaced efficiently in the correct range as soon as possible after being used. All ranges should be clearly labelled.

Weeding papers

You should weed old papers from ER pads during day to day work.

Retention periods

To ensure a consistent approach to the retention of employer records the HMRC guidance on retention periods should be followed.

Employer record pads (ER pads)

These should be kept in a yearly run in a central location and easily accessible to staff. SR Folders should be used to store correspondence.

When creating an ER pad the front must be noted up as follows

  • Date opened
  • PAYE office number / ER pad reference / Year
  • ER pad reference must be unique throughout the Area
  • Date closed

When placing papers in the ER pad you must

  • Add an employer record reference on both the item and use Function AMEND EMPLOYER NOTES to record this reference on EBS notes. (Noting the reference enables the item to be located and returned to the correct ER pad)

    • For example - 402/12/06 Appeal re band of Employer Ref xxyyzz
  • File the papers in reference number order
  • Use your own judgement to close an ER pad when it is full. There is no fixed number of items to be kept in each ER pad

Annual review of ER pads

You should carry out an annual review of ER pads. During this review destroy any ER pads that are older than the current tax year plus two full tax years to 5 April.

Employer notes on EBS

Where the EBS notes field on an employer record is used up, the existing notes should be cleansed to allow room for new entries. If the field cannot be cleansed sufficiently then a screen print of the EBS notes should be taken. After the print has been taken EBS notes should be cleansed except for notes of a permanent nature and a note should be added to record that an EBS screen print is held in the ER Pad.

For Example - 402/12/06 EBS screen print 01/02/06 to 28/02/06 held in ER Pad

ER pad for larger schemes

There are larger employers (for example councils, multi-national companies) that have unique requirements including regular correspondence and papers of a technical nature. These papers can be kept in an ER Pad created specifically for a large scheme. It is the responsibility of an officer or above to decide if an ER pad is needed for a particular employer and to ensure that they are managed correctly. These pads should be managed and disposed of in the same way as other ER pads.

For Example - 450/10/06 ER pad for xxxxxxx County Council

Annual run of forms P35 returns

All paper employer annual return forms P35, including additions / amendments and corrections should be stored in an annual run in employer reference number order.

Annual run of forms P11D(b) returns

All paper forms P11D(b) should be stored in an annual run in employer reference number order.

Annual run of forms P14 returns

All paper forms P14 should be stored in an annual run in employer reference number order.