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HMRC’s income record viewer is a game changer: here’s why

  • 3 min read
  • Last updated 23 Feb 2023

Have you heard? The highly anticipated income record viewer has finally touched down, and accountants and tax professionals across the country couldn’t be happier.

Wait, what’s the income record viewer?

HMRC has rolled out a new tool – an income record viewer for agents to access their client’s PAYE information. 

English, please? 😅

Ok, so basically, HMRC have finally understood that it can be difficult (or impossible) to get all of the information needed easily for an accountant to sort your tax return. This could be details of your personal tax accounts, pension, and/or income history. 

The HMRC income record viewer is a service that lets accountants easily access this information all in one place (with permission, of course!).

Why is the income record viewer useful?

When you hire an accountant to file your tax return, they’ll need to know information about your finances. Lots of information. Maybe even all of it. 🫣

Here are just some of the things your accountant needs to know to sort your tax return:

  • Details of income, both self-employed and employed
  • Details of any private pensions
  • Whether you received any dividends or savings interest during the tax year
  • Whether you received any other gains (this could be from rental property, selling an asset or receiving a bonus)

Perhaps someone in the HMRC HQ needed to sort their tax return, and was fed up of the back and forth emails with their accountant? Or maybe an equally as frustrated accountant proposed the idea to HMRC?

Either way, the income record viewer was born, and this service lets your accountant access all of the following information in one place:

  • Your PAYE information for the current year 
  • Your employment history including how long you were in employment, and if you received any taxable benefits such as a bonus
  • Information about your pension (both state and private pension)
  • A record of all of your income i.e earnings from any rental properties

And just like that, everyone’s happy. 🥳

But why should I use the income record viewer?

If you’ve been filing tax returns for a long time, you’re probably used to the traditional method which consists of… paperwork and spreadsheets. 🥲

OK, yes this method works. But number one, prepping all of your documents for the entire tax year to hand over to your accountant is extremely time-consuming (and let’s face it, boring 🥱).

Number two, this method leaves room for mistakes. A few mistakes here and there on your spreadsheet and your entire tax return could be incorrect.

Number three, the income record viewer is much more secure. No paperwork lying around, and no hackable spreadsheets. 

How it works is that the person sorting your tax return will simply email you an authorisation link. Once you’ve accepted this link, they can access your information for the current and previous four years.

How to access the income record viewer:

You’ll need an agent services account to access the service, but if you don’t have one, you can just create one here.

Why do our accountants love the HMRC income record viewer?

Besides the fact that it saves our accountants lots of time, they’ll also get full access to see your income with each employer, details of your pension, whether you’ve claimed any allowances and even if you’ve had any adjustments to your tax code. 

The question is why wouldn’t they love it?

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