What is Self Assessment and do I need to register?

Self Assessment is a system HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) uses to collect Income Tax. You must file an online Self Assessment tax return if, for example, you are self-employed as a sole trader and earned more than £1,000 (before taking off anything you can claim tax relief on). If you did not send an online return last year, you’ll first need to register for Self Assessment with HMRC. Tide can help you with the registration process – read below to find out how.

If you do not expect to earn more than £1000, you can still voluntarily register for Self Assessment with HMRC at any time.

Both sole traders and directors of registered companies can register for Self Assessment. However, the Tide Self Assessment registration service is only available to sole traders at this time.

What are the benefits of registering for Self Assessment?

You may be able to deduct various running costs to work out your taxable profit. Moreover, registering for Self Assessment can also help a business appear more established, instilling confidence in potential customers and suppliers.

I want to register for Self Assessment through Tide. How do I get started? What information will I need to provide?

Tide has made the Self Assessment registration process quick and easy. We’ve teamed up with our approved partner Clever Accounts, specialist accounting service providers, to process your Self Assessment registration application in a few simple steps.

Simply click the ‘Register for FREE Self-Assessment now’ button on the Self Assessment email we sent you. This will take you to the Clever Accounts Self Assessment registration form. Clever Accounts will ask you to provide the following details on the form:

  • your National Insurance number
  • a description of your business, your annual income, and when you started your business

What personal information will Tide share with Clever Accounts?

To make your Self Assessment registration process as smooth as possible, Tide will share the following personal information we have about you with Clever Accounts – Clever Accounts will use this to pre-fill your Self Assessment registration form, saving you precious admin time:

  • Title
  • Name
  • Address
  • Date of Birth
  • Email address
  • Telephone number

Is this a Tide Service?

Clever Accounts will be responsible for delivering the Self Assessment service to you and handle all of your questions and queries related to your Self Assessment application. Before you submit your Self Assessment registration form, you will be asked to accept Clever Accounts terms and conditions.
Who are Clever Accounts?
Clever Accounts have 15 years of experience of providing online accountancy services to UK companies and can help make the free Self Assessment process as simple as possible. More information can be found here:

Online Accountancy Services for Limited Companies

Who are Clever Accounts?

Clever Accounts have 15 years of experience of providing online accountancy services to UK companies and can help make the free Self Assessment process as simple as possible. More information can be found here:

Online Accountancy Services for Limited Companies

How long will it take to register for Self Assessment?

Provided you submit complete and accurate information, Clever Accounts will process and submit the registration form to HMRC within 2 working days from receiving the submitted form from you.

HMRC processes most Self Assessment registration applications within 10 business days of receipt (although actual processing times may differ depending on HMRC workload).

Note that you may cancel this service directly with Clever Accounts at any time up to the point Clever Accounts submit your Self Assessment registration form to HMRC. Once it is submitted to HMRC, Clever Accounts will not be able to contact HMRC on your behalf or amend, edit or check on the status of your application.

How will I know if I’ve been successfully registered for Self Assessment by HMRC?

Once you are successfully registered, HMRC will send you a letter with your Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR). In some cases, HMRC will want additional information to complete the registration. In these rare scenarios, the turnaround time tends to be 4-8 weeks. Unfortunately, there is no way to determine if a case will fall into this category at the time of application. some scenarios we might not be available to register for self-assessment

What is a Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR)?

A UTR number (Unique Taxpayer Reference) is a ten-digit number issued directly by HM Revenue & Customs and is used to identify individual Taxpayers within their system. UTR numbers are issued to individuals, companies, partnerships, trusts, and other types of organizations.

What happens if I am rejected for a Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR)?

In the rare cases where HMRC denies an application for Self Assessment registration or if there are significant barriers to you receiving a UTR number, Clever Accounts reserves the right to cancel the service at any time and for any reason. Clever Accounts will confirm cancellation by email.

Are there any additional/ongoing costs?

No, Self Assessment registration is a one-time application. Tide and Clever Accounts do not currently charge for this service.

What do I do once I have registered for Self Assessment?

From the effective date of registration:

  • HMRC will send you a Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) number in the post. You use your UTR to register for HMRC Online Services.
  • HMRC will then send you a PIN number in the post to access Online Services where you can file your Self Assessment

Where can I learn more about Self Assessment registration?

Self Assessment registration can be a confusing topic, especially for businesses with complex setups. It may be worth engaging a professional to discuss further. The government also provides a number to make general inquiries about Self Assessment registration which can be found here:


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