What is HMRC’s New Starter Checklist in the UK?

Rachel Greenway
Last updated on March 20, 2024

The HMRC new starter checklist (previously known as the P46) is a form new employees without a P45 must complete

As a UK employer, it’s your job to ensure this form is filled out during the onboarding phase. That way, you can upload everything into your payroll system right from the start and tax new staff correctly from their first payday.

Let’s take a closer look at what the starter checklist is and how to use one.  

What is a starter checklist?

Simply put, the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) starter checklist collects vital information that HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) needs to retrieve the correct tax code for your employee. This includes details of their previous income and any student loan repayments.

Is it the same as a P46 in the UK?

Yes, the starter checklist has replaced the P46 form. While the purpose remains the same - to collect information from UK employees who don't have a P45 form - the name has been updated to reflect its role more clearly.

Where can I get a starter checklist in the UK?

The HMRC starter checklist is readily available online. Employers can download it directly from HMRC’s website. This makes it accessible and easy to distribute to new hires who need it.

This is what it looks like...

HMRC Starter Checklist

How to fill out HMRC’s starter form

Filling out a new employee starter form is pretty straightforward. It will guide your employee through a series of questions about their previous employment and earnings within the current tax year. To complete it, employees will need the following information to hand:

✅ some personal details, like their name, full address and DOB

✅ their National Insurance number

✅ their start date at your company

✅ information of any student or postgraduate loans

✅ the last tax code they were on

✅ details of any income received in the current tax year from another job, as well as

✅ a pension or from Jobseeker’s Allowance

✅ Employment and Support Allowance or 

✅ Incapacity Benefit

Sometimes, a company sends an employee overseas to work for a specific period of time. In this case, the worker must also fill out an HMRC starter form and include their passport number on it. 

It’s important for employees to answer all these questions accurately so they can be taxed correctly.

Helping employees pick the right statement 

When they complete their HMRC starter checklist, employees will have to choose between three separate statements: A, B or C. Which one they choose will depend on their situation:

Statement A 

If this is the employee’s first job in the current tax year, they should choose this statement. They also shouldn’t be receiving taxable Job Seeker’s Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance, or any taxable incapacity Benefit or state or occupational pension. 

Statement B

If this is the employee’s only new job, but they’ve had another job since the 6th of April, it’ll be this statement. If your new hire has also received taxable Jobseeker's Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance or taxable Incapacity Benefit since the 6th of April, this should be the box they tick. 

Statement C

If the employee in question has another job or receives a state, works or private pension, then option C is for them. 

What if I don't have a P45 or starter checklist?

If a new employee doesn’t have a P45 from their previous employer, the HMRC starter form is their next best option. Completing this form will allow you to process their payroll accurately. Without either document, you’ll need to use an emergency tax code, which could result in incorrect tax deductions.

Does an employee need one if they have a P45?

No, if the employee has their P45, you don’t need them to complete a new employee starter checklist at all. The P45 provides all the necessary information to continue taxing the employee correctly.

When and how do I submit a starter checklist?

Interestingly, you don’t submit the starter checklist to HMRC. Instead, you use the information it contains to update your own payroll software (like PayFit!), which then communicates the relevant details to HMRC through Real Time Information (RTI) submissions. This process ensures HMRC has up-to-date information on all your employees' tax codes and statuses.

Ace it with PayFit! 🤝

Whenever you have a new starter, our software prompts you for the information required for the starter checklist. Your input is then automatically shared with HMRC during your next pay run via your Full Payment Submission (FPS).

Do foreign workers pay National Insurance in the UK?

Yes, foreign workers in the UK are subject to National Insurance contributions, just like UK residents. The information collected through the starter checklist helps determine their correct tax and National Insurance (NI) contribution levels, ensuring they’re treated fairly and in line with UK employment laws.

Streamline your onboarding process with PayFit 

Whether you're dealing with the complexities of P11D forms or navigating the intricacies of ERN and PAYE numbers for startups, PayFit has the tools and insights you need to manage your payroll efficiently. Remember, while the HM Revenue Starter Checklist is a critical document for new starters without a P45, PayFit's software ensures that its integration into your payroll system is seamless and straightforward.

One less thing to check off the list

The HM Revenue and Customs starter checklist might seem like just another piece of paperwork, but it plays a crucial role in ensuring your employees are taxed correctly from day one. While filling one out is pretty straightforward, it’s important that employees pick the right statement to fill out on it. 

The starter form can also help you determine the right amount of tax and NI to pay for foreign workers. By understanding how to obtain, fill out, and use this checklist, you can streamline your new hires process, ensuring compliance and accuracy in payroll.

Want to experience the future of payroll?
You may also like...

PayFit Launches New Open API for Improved Integations

Read the article

The Benefits Of Flexible Working For the UK Worforce

Read the article
View of the Leave and absence function

Leave & Absence Management Made Easier

Read the article

Types Of Flexible Working - A Guide For Employers

Read the article

What is Flexible Working Within the UK Workplace?

Read the article

Understanding the Paternity Leave Changes in 2024

Read the article