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HMRC internal manual

PAYE Manual

From
HM Revenue & Customs
Updated
, see all updates

Background: real time information (RTI): generic notification service (GNS)

This subject is presented as follows

Generic Notification Service (GNS)
GNS issue triggers and dates
Viewing GNS messages
Exceptions to receiving GNS messages
Schemes exempt from GNS messages
Late reporting reasons - exceptions to reporting PAYE on or before
Contact from the employer
Written queries to Employer Office

Generic Notification Service (GNS)

GNS messages advise employers who submit their RTI returns late that they may be charged a late filing penalty.

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GNS issue triggers and dates

Non file GNS

Almost every PAYE scheme will have a filing expectation based on the payment frequency declared within FPS received since joining RTI.  The schemes exempt from GNS also don’t have a filing expectation. A non file GNS will be created and issued when a scheme doesn’t  meet its filing expectation or does not report on an Employment Payment Submission (EPS) that no FPS is required.

The figure for filing expectancy is based upon HMRC analysis of the underlying compliance risk and is determined by business rules that look at previous filing data. Those business rules are, like other compliance risk assessment rules, (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000) , but there are a number of based design principles

  • The appropriate assessment period for non file is a tax month
  • Pay frequency should be taken into account
  • All standard live schemes can be expected to file at least once in a period
  • That all schemes with employees paid weekly or fortnightly should file multiple submissions within a period

The non file GNS assessment takes place on 11th calendar day of the following month and issued on or around the 12th calendar day. This is to allow an employer to file a Nil EPS by the 19th of the following month.

(This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000) (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)

Late file GNS

Late file GNS messages - these are issued on a daily basis.  They are generated by comparing the date of the submission of the FPS with the date of payments of individuals within it.  If an individual(s) payment date within an FPS is earlier than the submission date, a late file GNS message will be generated and issued the following day.  If a late reporting reason is used, this will be taken into account to determine if they payment has been reported late.  An employer will receive a maximum of one late file GNS message in a tax month irrespective of the number of times they submit late RTI returns during that period. From 06 March 2015 until 05 April 2017 a late filing failure will not be created where the employer sends in the RTI return within 3 days of the payday.

Example 1 – A Company Ltd submit an FPS on 10 June that includes payment dates of 17 May, 3 June, 7 June and 10 June.  Two failures are created in the Penalty and Appeals Service (PAS). 17 May and 3 June are reported late, 7 June is reported late but within 3 days and 10 June is on or before.  However only one late file GNS will be issued.

Late payment notices (1 and 2) GNS

The Late Payment GNS assessment will take place on the 5th of each month following the 19th of the previous month where payment has not been paid on time or in full. ETMP will check to make sure that every charge has been paid.  Where there is a charge outstanding over £100, ETMP creates a failure and issues a late payment GNS.

Example - C Ltd submits an FPS showing a tax liability of £1,200 for the month ended 5 June.  It pays £600 electronically on 10 June and another £300 on 21 June.  A failure is created in respect of the £300 outstanding and the Late Payment GNS is issued.

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Viewing GNS messages

Employers will be able to view these messages by logging into PAYE Online Services and selecting the generic notification notices from within the Notice summary section. This is done in exactly the same way employers check for their tax code notices.

Employers can also view their notifications in their commercial payroll package, as long as their software is compatible with viewing generic notifications. Employers should contact their payroll provider to check if their software is compatible.

The GNS message itself is not sent via email to an ‘Inbox’; they are sent to an electronic ‘holding area’. The electronic message can then be viewed by the employer and / or agent either using their 3rd party software, the Portal Viewer or their PAYE Online account. The Portal Viewer has functionality to allow the employer or agent to mark their electronic messages as ‘Complete’.

If the employer registers at the Government Gateway for online, to obtain their User ID and Password and enrols for PAYE then the employer is the only one who can view the GNS message.

Authorised agents can view their clients GNS messages, but only where there is a ‘client – employer’ relationship held on the Government Gateway.  Authorisation can be given  either via Online Agent Authorisation, a 64-8, or FBI-2. Both the employer and the agent will be able to view the GNS message.  If the employer or agent uses the Portal Viewer to view their electronic messages and marks the message as ‘Complete’ it will be deleted from the Portal Viewer and neither the employer nor agent will be able to view it.

 If the employer (often small employers) is not registered for online services and has a file only agent.  The agent will be registered for online but the agent is not authorised and therefore neither the employer nor the agent can view these messages.

HMRC will issue a GNS message where applicable, however GNS does not know whether an employer and / or their agent is registered and enrolled for PAYE Online.  HMRC will have a record of which employer schemes were identified for a GNS but it is possible that not all employers / agents will be able to view them because of scenario c above

Employers can also see these messages by using HMRC’s PAYE Desktop Viewer (PDV).

From 6 April 2014, employers can choose their preferred method of receiving GNS messages by going to HMRC Online, selecting the Generic Notice option link and choosing between receiving GNS notifications through either EDI or Internet. Receipt by EDI is dependent on the employer already having an EDI outbound communication in place or the messages cannot be delivered.

Employers already receiving email alerts for existing notifications such as tax codes will also automatically receive an email alert to tell them that they have a message.

Appeal GNS messages are only issued by Internet, so customers who elect to receive their GNS by EDI can view their appeal GNS by logging onto PAYE Online.

Exceptions to receiving GNS messages

There are a number of exceptions for schemes to receive GNS Notification messages. These are detailed below.

New employer

Late or non file GNS notifications will not be issued within 3 months scheme created date.

Period of inactivity

A Non File GNS will not be issued to an employer where a Nil EPS (Employer Payment Summary) for a period of inactivity has been received in respect of the reporting period.

No payment due

A Non File GNS will not be issued to an employer where an EPS advising No Payment Due in respect of the reporting period.

Annual Schemes

A Non File GNS will not be issued to an employer if the Scheme is an annual payer outside the Annual Payment Due Month.

Scheme status

A Non File GNS will not be issued to an employer if the Scheme is not live or the potentially ceased date is set on ETMP and the default relates to a later tax period than the ceased or potentially ceased date.

(This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)

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Schemes exempt from GNS messages

There are certain schemes exempt from receiving Late File or Non File GNS messages and these are

  • EPA
  • TAS
  • PSS
  • XP
  • NORPRO
  • Employers who fall into Carter Segmentation Band 5. For example, practising members of religious societies or orders whose beliefs are incompatible with the use of electronic methods of communication
  • Care and Support Workers, Digital Exclusion

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Late reporting reasons - exceptions to reporting PAYE on or before

Employers must file an FPS (Full Payment Submission) on or before the day they pay their employees, otherwise their submission is considered ‘late’. However there are a number of occasions when an employer can claim an extension to this filing period by selecting one of the new late reporting reason code boxes on the FPS.

If the payment date falls outside the late reporting reason period then a late file GNS notification message will be issued and a penalty will be due.

A late reporting reason to reporting PAYE on or before can be claimed in the following circumstances.

Late reporting reason code Description of why the payment is reported late (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
     
A Notional payment: Payment to Expat by third party or overseas employer (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
B Notional payment: Employment related security (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
C Notional payment: Other (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
D Payment subject to Class 1 NIC but P11D / P9D for tax (2015-16 is the last year P9D will be used) (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
F No requirement to maintain a Deductions Working Sheet / Impractical to report work done on the day (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
G Reasonable excuse (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
H Correction to earlier submission (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)

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Contact from the employer

Employers may ring the Employer Helpline or Payment Enquiry Line in relation to these notifications or they may write in to Employer Office. You should establish which notice the employer is referring to, either a filing notification or a payment notification and explain that this is a customer service message to help the employer to report and pay their PAYE obligations on time or they may be charged a penalty.

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Written queries to Employer Office

Employers may write to Employer Office in relation to these notifications. You should establish which notice the employer is referring to, either a filing notification or a payment notification and explain that this is a customer service message to help the employer to file and pay their PAYE obligations on time or they may be charged a penalty.