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Payroll year end checklist: Here’s what your business needs to do

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Payroll year end doesn't have to be stressful for your business

Payroll year end is approaching soon but there’s no reason to panic. If you’ve not put plans in to place to prepare for it, there’s time to get your payroll team ready for it.

There are a number of things you need to do for a successful payroll year end but the key things to remember are that you must report to HMRC on the previous tax year – and the submission date is 19 April.

You then need to prepare for the new tax year and make sure you give your employees their P60s by the end of May.

To help you with payroll year end, here are a few steps you need to take and key dates to be aware of, so you can make sure you do everything that is required and you stay on top of your payroll.

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Payroll year end things to do

1. Get your P60s ready

All your employees who are working with you on the final day of the tax year, on 5 April, need to receive a P60 from you by 31 May. This important document summarises their pay and deductions for the year.

Make sure you have enough P60s for all your employees (you can use online P60s too, which will help your business be more efficient and save money too). Once you’ve checked, if you don’t have enough, put some time aside to purchase more P60s forms.

2. Check when your payroll ends

Does your payroll end on week 52 or do you have a week 53 (if the pay date falls on 4 or 5 April due to the leap year for 2020) to take into consideration? Not sure?

If your employees are paid monthly, you won’t have a week 53, so you can process your payroll as normal.

If some (or all) of your employees are paid on a weekly, fortnightly or four weekly basis, if your normal pay date doesn’t fall on 5 April, you don’t have a week 53.

However, if those weekly, fortnightly or four weekly payments mean your normal pay date does fall on 4 or 5 April, then you do have a week 53.

In this case, all you need to do is complete your payroll for 5 April in the usual way before processing your year end.

3. Check for leavers

Have any of your employees left your business? If so, you need to process them as leavers. It’s important that you do this before submitting your Full Payment Submission (FPS) and Employer Payment Summary (EPS).

4. Send your final FPS of the year

So, you’ve worked out whether you have a week 53, processed the final payroll of the tax year and have made any of your employees’ leavers. Now you can send your final FPS and, if required, EPS.

As part of the preparation, you would process your final pay period and submit your last FPS – but just for your final pay period. When you process your year end, you’ll do an internet submission. The deadline for this is 19 April.

There’s no difference to the FPS and EPS in the final pay period. Submit them as normal, you can then proceed with the payroll year end process.

5. Process your year end

Using your payroll software, make sure you check your processing date – this needs to be set for 5 April. Now you can process your year end and make your final submission for the 2019/20 tax year.

Once this step is complete, you can produce your P60s. Remember, your employees need to receive them by 31 May.

And that’s it – you’ve completed the payroll year end process for another year. Put your feet up for five minutes – then get ready to start processing payroll for the new tax year.

Payroll year end dates to be aware of

Some of the key dates around payroll year end have been highlighted above but here they are again along with some other payroll dates that you need to be aware of.

It’s worth adding these to your calendar (if you haven’t got them in there already).

5 April

  • The 2019/20 tax year ends on this date

6 April

  • The new tax year (2020/21) begins

From 6 April

  • Update your employee payroll records
  • Time to update your payroll software

19 April

  • This is the deadline for the final submission of the 2019/20 tax year

By 31 May

  • Your employees need to receive their P60s

By 6 July

  • You need to report on expenses and benefits – you can use your payroll software to do this

6 July

  • This is the deadline to submit your P11D and P11D(b) forms

19 July

  • On this date, payment of class 1A National Insurance contributions must be with HMRC

Final thoughts on payroll year end

See, payroll year end doesn’t need to be stressful – with a bit of forward planning, you can get your processing done with ease before you put preparations in place for the new tax year.

Are you in the process of preparing for payroll year end? Let us know how you are getting on with it in the comments below.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in March 2018 and has been updated for relevance.

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