Updated: Dec 4, 2021
New tax checks for taxi drivers and private hire drivers working in Northern Ireland were confirmed and will launch in April 2023.
The fresh measures, now likely to come in to force across all four devolved UK nations, arrive as HMRC seeks to clamp down on lost revenue in the ‘hidden economy’. The new policy will also affect licensing bodies that administer licence applications.
In England and Wales, HMRC have already released similar fresh tax rules earlier this year. All taxi and private hire drivers and operators must now follow the new tax rule checks when applying for a new or renewed licence on or after 4 April 2022.
According to BBC sources, the Northern Ireland Government confirmed all checks will be done online, similar to that proposed in both England Wales.
The Northern Ireland Government added: "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."
What taxi tax checks are arriving in England and Wales?
HMRC have stepped up their campaign to notify and prepare ALL licensed taxi and private hire drivers of tax changes happening next year.
From April 2022, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is introducing the new tax check that must be completed when people RENEW their licences to drive taxis, drive and operate private hire vehicles, or deal in scrap metal in England and Wales.
The digital tax check service will not be available until early next year, but HMRC wants people to prepare as early as possible by making sure they are registered to pay the appropriate taxes on their licensed income ahead of the changes.
Licensees will need to complete the tax check when they renew their licence as a:
Driver of a taxi (hackney carriage)
Driver of a private hire vehicle (and dual licences)
Private hire vehicle operator.
The renewal of these licences will only be given if the person applying can show they have completed the simple tax check with HMRC.
The check will not include any calculations, it is simply to confirm that someone is appropriately registered for tax on their licensed income.
A HMRC spokesperson said: “This is about creating a level playing field for the compliant majority in these sectors, so the majority who do play by the rules won’t be disadvantaged by the minority who do not.”