Agent update 59

26 April 2017

The latest agent update includes details about a change from 2 May 2017. HMRC will no longer provide agents with client data over the phone.

The article reads as follows:

“Changes to requests by agents for pay and tax details and employment history

We have seen a growing number of security issues recently, related to requests from agents for their clients’ pay and tax and employment histories through our helplines. These include agents pretending to be their clients, and calling on behalf of clients who have not given the correct permissions.

As a result, we are making changes to the way we supply this confidential data. While we can continue to take requests for this information on our helplines, we can no longer provide the detailed personal information directly to agents over the phone. From 2 May 2017, we will send the requested information directly to the clients, who will then be able to forward it to their agent for the relevant claim to be made or tax return completed.

This security measure will add some time to the process, so as a quicker alternative, please note that clients can access this information through the online service in their personal tax account. They can now view, print and download their pay and tax details for CY and CY-1 in just a few minutes from their personal tax account. They will need their National Insurance number and a recent payslip, P60 or passport to sign-in for the first time.

We are working on a digital facility that will enable agents to access their clients’ details securely online, which is expected to go live later this year.”

This news has already generated many comments from the agent community. Accounting Web and CCH Daily both recently published articles about this change.

Agent update 59 also includes many more updates on:

  • Auto enrolment
  • Scottish Income Tax
  • Changes to HMRC service, upcoming HMRC events and guidance
  • Consultations
  • Working Together

Previous editions of Agent Update are also available on GOV.UK.