RTI is coming, RTI is coming…

…and Eagle Consulting are ready for it!

Real Time Information (RTI) is widely believed to be the biggest change to PAYE since it was introduced almost 70 years ago and will impact all payroll services in the country.  It will be coming into effect from April 2013, yet a recent survey showed that 25% of employers do not know what it is.

So, what is RTI?

RTI is a new way of reporting pay and deductions made under PAYE and will affect every employer.  All payroll services will need to be compliant with the new system, both in terms of software and reporting practices.  Instead of preparing and sending detailed reports to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) at the end of the tax year, under RTI reports must be sent online every time an employee is paid.  If you employ fewer than 5,001 employees you will be required to use the RTI system from 6th April 2013.  It is expected that everyone else will be using RTI by October 2013.

RTI does not affect the way employees are paid.  However, if you use Bacs to pay your employees a new 4 character code must be added into the Bacs payment file.  If your payroll software is compliant it will generate this code automatically.  Other payments such as internet banking, cheque or cash do not need this code.

Once RTI is fully functional you will no longer need to file P35’s and P14’s at the end of the year, but P60’s will still be required.  P46’s and P45’s will also become obsolete when the system is fully operational.

What do you need to do?

First and foremost, make sure your payroll software is RTI compliant.  Eagle Consulting’s software is fully RTI compliant and has been rigorously tested to ensure that it is, but not all software will be.  If you use HMRC’s Basic PAYE Tools software it will be compliant but will only be available for payrolls of 9 employees or less.  If you currently use this software and have 10 or more employees you will need to find an alternative.

There are a number of additional tasks you need to undertake before 6th April 2013:

  • Check the existing data you hold for all employees is accurate and up to date:
    • NI numbers – temporary numbers will not be acceptable.
    • Date of Birth – incorrect or fictitious dates will not be acceptable.
    • Gender.
    • Full name – this must be the employees name as displayed on their passport.  Shortened or abbreviated names will not be acceptable.
    • Home address.
  • Collect the new data items needed for RTI submissions:
    • The Department for Work and Pensions will need to know how many hours an employee works in order to calculate any tax credits due.  Each employee will need to be assigned to one of four bands of weekly hours:
      • A – up to 16 hours
      • B – 16-29.99 hours
      • C – 30 hours or more
      • D – other (for people who do not work, such as pensioners)
  • Ensure all staff are trained for RTI procedures.

Don’t Panic

There is still time but you do need to be ready.  If you have any concerns about RTI we can help. Please contact Eagle Consulting immediately on 0800 731 5368 or e-mail us at payroll@eagleconsulting.co.uk.

We’re ready.  Are you?