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HMRC internal manual

PAYE Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Employer returns: employer return - quality checks: form P35 and forms P14 - 2005 onwards (Action Guide)

Note: This subject provides details of how to record receipt of employer returns for tax years from 2004-05 onwards.

To carry out the checks required prior to recording receipt of a form P35 and forms P14 for years 2005 onwards, follow steps 1 - 7 below. The guide is presented as follows.

Note: These checks must be made on the day the return is received.

Step 1

Step 2

Steps 3 - 4

Steps 5 - 6

Step 7

For details of how to access any of the Employer Business Service functions, use PAYE057.

Year of return

  1. Identify the year shown on the return
  • If the return is for the current tax year (CY) and today’s date is before 24 March, send the return and enclosures to the Debt Management Office
  • If the return is for the current tax year (CY) and today’s date is on or after 24 March go to step 2
  • If the return is for a year CY-1 or earlier
    • For returns for years up to 2003-04 follow Action Guide ‘Form P35 and forms P14 - up to 2004’ PAYE40020
    • For returns for years 2005 onwards - go to step 2

Form P35 check

  1. Review the P35 employer annual return and note any of the following errors to be taken up with the employer
  • A paper return form is incomplete (a paper form P35 is received without all the forms P14)

Note: If an employer intends to send the whole return by paper, then the return must be submitted as a complete return and not in parts.

  • The return is unsigned
  • The return submitted is not an official P35 employer annual return
  • The return submitted is an unofficial / unapproved P35 employer annual return
  • The P35 return submitted is not the correct version for that tax year, and
  • Information is missing from the P35

Note: Photocopies of the official P35 can only be accepted where it is identical to the official form and, the return bears the signature, in ink, of the relevant person

We cannot accept photocopies of the completed forms P35 where the signature is also photocopied

Form P14 checks

  1. You must apply the quality check against all paper forms P14

Note: The machines used to scan forms P14 can only read details on approved forms and photocopies are not acceptable.

  1. Review the forms P14 to ensure they are complete and correct. For more information see subject ‘Paper quality checks’ PAYE40050
  • If the forms are complete and correct go to step 6
  • If the forms cannot be corrected / reconstructed (for further guidance see subject ‘Correction of failed returns’ PAYE40035) go to step 7

Repairing errors found

  1. To repair forms P14 or P35, either
  • Strike through the illegible entry on the form P14 and enter in the correct information clearly

Note: You must use green ink for this purpose.

  • Prepare a new form P14 to record the correct information

Note: This must be noted ‘Pro-Forma’ and completed in green ink.

  1. If the return is now complete
  • Date stamp any return, not already stamped, with the date it was received, and
  • Record receipt of the return. Follow the Action Guide ‘Recording receipt of employer return’ PAYE41041

Send back the return

  1. Use Function RECORD RETURN RECEIPT to record the failure reason
  • Use SEES in Microsoft Word to generate a failure letter
  • Send the return back to the employer with the failure letter
  • Make an entry in the employer-related electronic file ‘Employers making mistakes on EOY Returns’