Do I Need to Submit a Self-Assessment Tax Return if I Use an Umbrella Company?

02 November 2021

What is Self-Assessment?

Self-Assessment is a system HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) uses to collect Income Tax. Tax is usually deducted automatically from wages and pensions via the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) method. People and businesses with other income must report it in a tax return.

Those using Self Assessment file an annual tax return to report their income.  The tax return covers the period 6th April to 5th April, with the tax return and any subsequent tax due by the following 31st January.  HMRC then calculate what you owe to factor in all of your income, as what you earn from one source may affect what tax you owe on another source due to the way our tax bandings work.

Using an umbrella company does not mean you need to file a tax return; however, you may need to file if you meet any of the following criteria.  These include if you:
  • You are working for yourself – you are self-employed;
  • You are a partner in a partnership business;
  • You are a minister of religion – any faith or denomination;
  • You are a trustee or the executor of an estate.
You also might need to complete a Self-Assessment tax return if:
  • You are a company director, and you have income that is not taxed under PAYE;
  • You have untaxed income. This could be, for example, an interest that is not taxed before it is paid to you or rental income. If you are an employee or a pensioner and the income (profit) is less than £2,500 a year, you might not have to complete a tax return, but it is still your responsibility to report such income by contacting HMRC. If you receive other untaxed income and the tax due on it cannot be collected via your PAYE coding notice, you will need to complete a tax return;
  • You receive regular annual income from a trust or settlement, or you receive income from the estate of a deceased person, and further tax is due;
  • You have foreign income on which UK tax is due (although there is an exclusion if your foreign income consists solely of less than £300 of dividend income).
  • You are a non-resident, and you have taxable income in the UK. This includes non-UK resident landlords. 
  • You have income from savings and investments of £10,000 or more before tax;
  • You have an annual income of £100,000 or more before tax;
  • You or your partner receive child benefit, and your adjusted net income is over £50,000. This is because of the high-income child benefit charge;
  • You have tax due at the end of the year that cannot be collected via your PAYE coding notice in a later year;
  • Your untaxed income is £2,500 or more – but if you are a pensioner, you may be able to pay your tax through your PAYE Coding Notice;
  • Your claims for expenses are £2,500 or more;
  • You have capital gains where:
  • You have given away or sold assets worth more than four times of the annual capital gains tax allowance (£12,300 in 2022/23); or
  • You have a capital loss, but your gains net of any losses are more than the annual exemption for 2022/23 of £12,300; or
  • You have no losses to claim, but your gains are more than the annual exemption for 2022/23 of £12,300; or
  • You need to make any other capital gains tax claim or election for the year.

If you are not sure, the Government has a handy tool on their website that will tell you if you need to file a tax return.

What to do if you need to file a tax return?

Don’t worry, we, or should I say our sister company, MyAccountant, can help!  Contact them or us directly on the link above to speak to a tax expert.

  1. We will send you our tax questionnaire to gather your data and establish the pertinent facts to prepare your tax return.
  2. If you have not filed a tax return in the past, we will register you with HMRC and obtain your Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR)
  3. We will prepare your tax return and provide you with the SA100 form and a detailed tax computation.
  4. Once approved, we will electronically submit your return to HMRC and provide an emailed receipt as proof for your records.

And that’s it!

We hope you find this guide helpful in answering some of your questions about self-assessment. If you require assistance and are already with SmartWork, all you have to do is contact your business manager. Otherwise, feel free to call 0800 434 6446 or email us at

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