If you're in the UK and are either self-employed, freelancing, running a business or have to do anything to do with taxes, revenue, or benefit claims, chances are you will need a Government Gateway account. Government Gateway is an IT system that makes all of this information easily accessible and amendable online.
To get started, you will need to create a Government Gateway Account. Once you have created your Government Gateway account, you will also be issued a Government Gateway User ID. This ID can be used to log in to the HMRC online portal.
Generally, you would register for a Government Gateway Account if you have one of the following requirements:
- You need a personal tax account
- You need to send a Self Assessment tax return (this could be to report rental, investment, or other self-employment income)
- have set up a limited company, or another organisation that needs to pay taxes
Some other reasons why you might need an HMRC Government Gateway account are if:
- you want to operate PAYE - this happens when you start to employ people and have them on your payroll
- you want to charge VAT - this happens when your taxable turnover exceeds £85,000
Steps To Create a Government Gateway Account
Step 1: Go to HMRC's website and access their login portal. You can find it here. Once you are on this page, you will see a green sign-in button. Even if you don't currently have an account, you should still go ahead and click this button.
Step 2: You will be redirected to the sign-in page. Here you will see an option to "Create sign-in details" just under the sign-in form. Click on this.
Step 3: Once you have clicked on this, you be redirected to a page asking you to input your email address. The Government Gateway portal will then send you a confirmation code. Enter the confirmation code to get access to the services.
Step 4: Next, you will be given prompters and asked to fill out your name. Fill these out as accurately as possible. After this, you will be asked to input a strong password for your account. Make sure this is something secure. You will also be asked to submit a memorable word. This will be of assistance if you ever forget your password or get locked out of your account.
Step 5: Once you have successfully filled out all of your information, you will be issued a Government Gateway ID. This is the User ID for your Government Gateway Account.
It is extremely important to make a note of this Government Gateway User ID. You will need it in the future to sign in to your Government Gateway Account. The User ID serves as a username for your HMRC online portal.
Step 6: Once you have your Government Gateway User ID, you will be asked to fill out some more details to complete your registration. Primarily, this involves letting HMRC know what type of account you want to sign up for. There are three options to choose from.
- Individual: This is generally for those that want to open a tax account for their own personal reasons. This is ideal for those that are self-employed or want to claim certain tax benefits depending on their situation.
- Organisation: This is suitable if you are creating a Government Gateway account for a non-personal entity. This could be anything from limited companies and partnerships to charities and trusts.
- Agents: This account type is suitable for those who are acting on behalf of their clients, for example, accountants.
Once you have selected your account type of choice, you're 90% set up with your government gateway account!
After this, you might have to answer some identity verification questions. The HMRC portal also supports 2 Factor Authentication. Each time you log in, you will be sent an access code on your medium of choice. This is to ensure that your account remains protected and secure and to avoid any data breaches.