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HMRC internal manual

PAYE Manual

Employment maintenance: filing online: employers: introduction

Some employers submit information to HMRC online using Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) or Online Return and Forms - PAYE (ORFP). Employment Maintenance forms submitted using these medias are P45 Part 1 and Part 3, P46, P46(Pen) and requests for Works Number updates. Employers in RTI will submit starter and leaver information as part of their Full Payment Submission (FPS).

The same Employment Regulations apply to employers who opt to file their Employment Maintenance forms online as to any other employer.

Automatic processing updates an existing individual record or creates a new record. Where automatic updating cannot take place a work item is produced.

Staff working on Employment Maintenance Sections dealing with employers who submit forms online need to

  • Be proactive in maintaining good relationships with employers
  • Refer details of employers who persistently fail to comply with their obligations to the Manager who should forward the details to the Employer Compliance Team to consider for compliance reviews

Note: Any problems in the operation of the online system by your employer should be directed to the appropriate contact at IMS, Electronic Business Unit (EBU).

As with other employers, offices should consider organising their Employment Maintenance teams in such a way as to be able to carry out business by telephone successfully with minimum disruption to the employer who uses our online services. 

To conform to legislation, HMRC must ensure that computer systems are not being used unless there is a legitimate business need. This applies equally to viewing records as it does to updating them. An audit trail is created each time a user accesses a record and any unauthorised or inappropriate accesses will be considered for action under the Department’s Conduct and Discipline rules, and may also constitute a criminal offence.