HMRC call accountants Agents.
No idea why – they just do; so it’s a term that you need to be familiar with and you may need to explain to clients what it means so that they understand when HMRC refer to their Agent.
In order to be able to communicate with HMRC about your client you need to have Agent reference codes in place. Obtaining the relevant codes is an unnecessarily complex and painful process. Grit your teeth; there is no other option. You just have to get on and do it.
Agent codes from HMRC
HMRC require you to have separate agent codes for each tax. There are different ways to get the codes. How to go about things is explained here:
To be able to file accounts at Companies House using third party software you need a presenter account which will give you a presenter identifier and presenter authentication code.
You apply for a presenter account by completing this form:
The presenter identifier and authentication code will be sent through the post.
When you want to file accounts for a client, or to file a client’s Confirmation Statement, you will need their Companies House authentication code.
They would have received this when the company was set up. However if they do not have the authentication code a reminder of the code can be requested online here:
The authentication code will be sent to the company’s registered office address within 5 working days. The client should make sure that they have access to their registered office before this is done or they have mail forwarding in place.
When you set up your Accountancy Practice you’ll be keen to get started with clients. Do allow enough time to get these codes through. You’ll get used to how slow HMRC can be!