HMRC step up late PAYE payment fines

HMRC are warning employers that from May 2010 they may have to pay a penalty if they do not pay their PAYE on time. These are generally due each month, on time and in full.

HMRC will implement late payment penalties for payments due from May 2010. From then on, employers may have to pay penalties if they make more than one PAYE payment late in a tax year. The new penalties will apply to all employers, including large employers (those with more than 250 employees) who currently are subject to a Mandatory Electronic Payment surcharge.

HMRC are advising employers to let them know if they are likely to have difficulty making a payment on time, so that arrangements can be made and penalties can be avoided. Their guidance states that where employers enter into ‘time to pay’ arrangements, before the liability becomes due, no penalty will be charged. Penalties for late payment start at 1% increasing to 4% depending on the number of late payments in the year. Extra penalties will be added where liabilities our outstanding for a further six and then 12 months.