Sep 06, 2017
UTR = Unique Taxpayer Reference. It's a code that HMRC assigns you as a person, or to your company as a legal entity.
We frequently get clients asking us where this is or how to get it.
Well, it's simple!
Your UTR number is on any letter that HMRC sends you if you have registered a company or signed up directly as a self-employed person.
It's a 10 digit code.
→ Need help getting your UTR? Contact us here
It's that boring little reference number on the letters they sent you.
Below is a screenshot of a typical HMRC letter. The actual number in this example is, of course, is obscured. A UTR number is an important piece of ID and you should not let other people know it for casual reasons.
HMRC make it tricky to find because they don't make it obvious; it looks like a typical in-house reference number that any major body uses to 'tag' your letters.
It's the sort of thing your eyes gloss over because you're reading the body of the letter.
The code is printed on:
- Payment reminders
- Self Assessment welcome letter
- Notice to file a tax return
- Statement of account
- Your self assessment tax return
The UTR can take a while to come through. HMRC recommend that you leave at least 20 working days (i.e. one month) to receive your number.
After registering for HRMC’s online services you get an an email confirming your login details and once you log in to the portal you can see your UTR Number. You will need to pass a series of security checks to allow HMRC to confirm your identity.
→ Need help? Contact us
Why is the number important?
It's important because you need it to do your tax returns. You use the number to set up log-in access to your 'listing' at HMRC. Once this is set up, you can do your tax returns online.
Of course, it also functions as an old-fashioned reference or case number. You are no longer Elisabeth McTavish, you are 40985 44702.
People think they will be sent this number on a special card or it'll be highlighted in some way. Nope!
HMRC 'keeps it real' by keeping it minimal. There's nothing like the sweet, sweet panic you get when your filing date looms and you're wondering where or what your UTR number is!