What’s changing

From 4 April 2022, there will be a small addition to the checks licensing bodies already have in place. You’ll need to complete a tax check with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) when you renew your licence to:

  • drive taxis or private hire vehicles
  • operate private hire vehicle businesses
  • deal in scrap metal.

The changes will only apply in England and Wales.

How changes may affect you

What you need to do will depend on whether you’re applying for a licence for the first time or whether you’re making a subsequent application, such as renewing a licence.

Getting a new licence

If you are applying for a licence for the first time, you will not need to complete the tax check. However, licensing bodies will ask you to read HMRC guidance on what you need to do to be properly registered for tax in the future and you’ll need to confirm you have done this.

Renewing a licence

From 4 April 2022, if you renew or apply for a subsequent licence under a different licensing body, you’ll have to do a tax check. You’ll be able to do this online through a digital service. 

About the tax check

You will be able to complete this tax check on GOV.UK, through your Government Gateway account. You will only need to answer a few questions to tell HMRC how you pay any tax that may be due on income you
earn from your licensed trade. If you do not already have a Government Gateway account, you can sign up on GOV.UK.

The tax check should only take a few minutes. There’ll be guidance on GOV.UK and anyone who needs extra support will be able to complete the tax check by phone through HMRC’s customer helpline.

When you’ve completed the tax check, you’ll get a code. You must give this code to your licensing body. The licensing body cannot proceed with your licence application or renewal until the tax check is completed
and they’ve received the code. Your licensing body will only receive confirmation from HMRC that you’ve completed the tax check, they will not have access to information about your tax affairs.

What you need to do

If you’ve not registered to pay tax on earnings from your licensed trade, please go to GOV.UK to check if
you need to register as soon as possible. 

If you should have been registered to pay tax and have not been, HMRC will work with you promptly and professionally to get you back on the right track. It’s your responsibility to get your tax right, but HMRC are
here to help.

You can get help from HMRC if you need extra support, for example if you need information in a different format or need help filling in forms. Visit GOV.UK and search ‘Get help from HMRC if you need extra support’.

For further guidance on the tax check, please visit: www.gov.uk/guidance/changes-for-taxi-private-hire-or-scrap-metal-licence-applications-from-april-2022