Drivers: Mandatory Tax Check Requirements

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The new mandatory HMRC Tax Check has been imposed from April 2022 on all individuals, partnerships and companies applying for a taxi or private hire licences in England and Wales.

From April 4th 2022 HMRC introduce mandatory tax checks on all taxi drivers, private hire drivers, and private hire vehicle operators.

This is part of the Government’s proposals to address the “hidden economy” – individuals and businesses with sources of taxable income that are entirely hidden from HMRC.

If you’re an individual, company or any type of partnership you must complete a tax check if you’re:

  • renewing a licence
  • applying for the same type of licence you previously held, that ceased to be valid less than a year ago
  • applying for the same type of licence you already hold with another licensing authority

For renewing your old licence:
A private hire/hackney carriage driver licence or a private hire operator licence must complete a tax check while renewing a licence.

The tax check will ask questions about how you pay any tax that may be due on income you earn from your licensed trade.

After you have completed the tax check you will be given a 9-character tax check code. (Tax check codes will be valid for 120 days, this means any drivers due for renewal can in theory obtain their tax check code well in advance of their licence expiry date).

You will need to give the code on your application to the licensing authority, so they can confirm you have carried out a tax check.

You must carry out the tax check yourself. You cannot ask a tax agent or adviser to do this on your behalf.

You will not be granted a licence if you do not give a tax check code to the licensing authority.

Failure to provide your tax check code will mean that any existing licence held will expire and you will not be licensed to drive a hackney carriage (taxi) or a private hire vehicle or hold a private hire operator licence to accept bookings. The licensing team will not have access to your tax or income data, only the check code will be provided.

For new applicants:
Individuals will be required to acknowledge their application awareness of HMRC guidance about tax registration obligations.

You will need a Government Gateway user ID and password to complete a tax check, so you should make sure you have one before you need to make your licence application.

If you do not have a user ID, you can create one by registering for HMRC online services.
The HMRC has developed guidance for drivers and operators that are detailed below:

Check Taxi Factsheet

For more information – go to GOV.UK or Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council

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