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HMRC internal manual

Self Assessment Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Records: set up taxpayer record: notification on form SA1

Form SA1 is used by individuals that are not self employed but wish to register for SA. For example a company director who is in receipt of income from land and property in the UK.

The Central Agent Authorisation Team (CAAT) process the majority of forms SA1 for HMRC along with forms 64-8 which often accompanies the form. See below for exceptions.

For the process to set up a Partnership record, see subject ‘Set up Taxpayer Records: Partnerships’ (SAM100135).

The form requires a valid national insurance number (NINO). The application cannot be processed without the NINO. (Genuine exceptions to this will be dealt with by CAAT as they arise). If the NINO is not supplied on form SA1, CAAT will issue SEES letter CAAT2 to the individual asking them to provide the valid NINO.

Customers can register for Self Assessment using Form SA1 online or the Form SA1 can be downloaded from the HMRC web site but customers are to be encouraged to provide the information over the phone to the SA Helpline rather than by post.

From October 2014, those customers that complete the registration form online using KANA will have their SA record created, or reactivated, automatically without manual intervention from the CAAT team. There may be exceptions but these will be noted on a Work Management list for the CAAT team to work manually.

Certain teams will retain their own SA registration work because of the complexities of their roles or because of their efficient current processes. These include

  • Specialist PT Trusts. If the completed form SA1 states they need to be in SA because of income from a trust, settlement or estate of a deceased person you must forward the form to the relevant Trust office for their action
  • Expats Team in Specialist PT. If after tracing you find the customer has a record on the National Insurance and PAYE Service on which the Expat Indicator is recorded you should note SA1 ‘PAYE Service record shows expat indicator’ and forward it to Specialist PT Manchester Expat Team
  • High Net Worth Unit Cases (HNWU). These cases will not be immediately identifiable. However, if after tracing you find the customer has an SA record where the CPR signal is set, refer the SA1 to the HNWU
  • Unsolicited Returns. These will not be dealt with by CAAT, regardless of whether they are accompanied by an SA1
  • Requests by letter to register in SA. These should continue to be dealt with by the receiving office. However, where no valid NINO has been supplied or cannot be traced, the customer should not be set up in SA. Customers should be contacted to say they must provide a valid NINO. The suggested words below should be used by PT Operations staff (not CAAT) to fit the circumstances of the case

Self Assessment

Why we are writing to you

We are writing to you about your application to register with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) as a self assessed taxpayer. Unfortunately, we cannot register you for self assessment without a valid National Insurance number. We are also unable to provide you with a Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR).

What to do now

You may have a National Insurance number already. You can find your National Insurance number on

* Your National Insurance card
* Letters from Social Security
* Documents sent to you from HMRC
* Pay slips and
* Forms P45 or P60

A National Insurance number is made up of letters and numbers in the following format: DQ 12 34 56 A.

If you do not have a National Insurance number and need to apply for one, you must attend an Evidence of Identity interview at a Jobcentre Plus or Social Security office. To arrange this please contact the Department for Work and Pensions Contact Centre on 0845 600 0643.

Delays in completing registration may result in penalties and / or interest being charged.

What documents are needed

When you contact Jobcentre Plus or the Social Security office, they will tell you what evidence you will need to take with you to the interview to establish your identity.

If you are in any doubt about the interview or what evidence you will need, let the Jobcentre Plus or Social Security office know before you attend.

What we need you to do

As soon as a UK National Insurance number is given to you, please register for self assessment by ringing the Self Assessment Helpline on 0845 900 0444.

It is unlikely forms SA1 will be received in an office other than the ones noted above, if you do receive an SA1 and you are not in a team covered under the exceptions above, date stamp it and send it straight to CAAT. No other correspondence should be sent to CAAT with the SA1 unless it is form 64-8, in which case that too can be sent to CAAT.