Employer PAYE reference number

Ciaran Burke

Page written by AI. Reviewed by Ciaran Burke on February 12, 2024.

Definition

The employer PAYE reference number, often shortened as “PAYE reference,” is a unique identifier assigned to employers by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

What is an employer PAYE reference number?

An employer PAYE reference number is used to administer and manage pay as you earn (PAYE) taxes, which are deducted from employees’ salaries and paid to HMRC by their employers.

When an employer registers with HMRC for PAYE purposes, they are assigned a unique PAYE reference number. This number is used to identify the employer’s PAYE scheme and is linked to their tax records.

The PAYE reference number is a unique combination of letters and numbers. It typically consists of three parts:

  1. A two-digit HMRC office number, which identifies the tax office that handles the employer’s PAYE affairs.
  2. A unique reference code assigned to the employer’s PAYE scheme.
  3. A check digit, which is used to verify the accuracy of the reference number.

Employers use their PAYE reference number when reporting payroll information to HMRC, including employee earnings, tax deductions, National Insurance contributions, and other relevant details.

Example of an employer PAYE reference number

Here’s a simplified example of an employer PAYE reference number:

Employer: ABC Ltd

PAYE reference number: 123/A45678

In this example, “123” represents the HMRC office number, “A45678” is the unique reference code assigned to ABC Ltd’s PAYE scheme.

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