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P60 Form Explained UK 2019

HMRC enjoys giving its forms mysterious names and the P60 form is no exception.

But if you’re an employee it is one of the most important tax forms you’ll receive. So let’s get to grips with it.

Here I explain the basics of the P60 form to help you understand what it shows, why you need it and how you get one.

What is a P60?

A P60 is an overview of everything you and any deductions they have made during one complete tax year. That means you’ll receive one every year.

The tax year runs from 6 April to 5 April.

It summarises information such as:

  • Gross pay;
  • Income tax and national insurance deducted;
  • Any statutory payments made to you such as maternity pay;
  • Any other deductions made such as student loan repayments.

It is really just a summary of what has happened to your pay before it hits your bank account.

The P60 form itself is created by HMRC but your employer is responsible for filling it out and giving it to you since they handle all your taxes on your behalf.

When Is It Issued?

Employers are legally required to provide P60s to all their employees by 31 May each year.

So your P60 for the tax year 2018/2019 covering your salary and deductions between 6 April 2018 to 5 April 2019 should be given to you by 31 May 2019.

Depending on your employer, you may receive it either as a paper version or by email.

What Does a P60 Look Like?

Here’s a blank P60 form used in the UK so you know what it looks like:

P60 form explained
Example P60 Form

HMRC has several different formats that an employer can use when they need to complete P60s.

But, despite any differences in colours or orientation, all versions of the form contain the same sections.

Understanding Your P60

The form is made of different sections to help summarise all the crucial information succinctly and in an easy to understand way.

These main sections are:

Employee Details

Your personal information such as national insurance number and full name.

Gross Pay and Income Tax

The total amount you are paid and income tax deducted from it

National Insurance Deductions

How much national insurance has been deducted from your pay and a breakdown of how much across your different pay levels.

Statutory payments

Details of any statutory payments that you were entitled to, including maternity, paternity and adoption pay.

Other details

If there is any other information you need to know about it will be included here, as well as any student loan deductions made.

Employer Details

Your employers name and address so you know who issued it.

Who Gets a P60

P60s are issued by an employer to all of its employees during the tax year.

That means if you left employment during a tax year, you will not get a P60. All the information regarding gross salary and deductions will be on your P45.

If you’re employed by more than one company on 5th April, you’ll receive separate P60 forms from each employer.

What Happens When You Change Your Job Part Way Through the Tax Year

If you left employment after the tax ends you should still get a P60. That’s because your employer still needs to give you all the information about your pay for any complete tax years you work for them.

If you changed jobs and moved to a new Employer you should only expect to receive one P60 form from your current Employer.  

When you left your previous employment you will have been issued with a P45, with details of all tax and national insurance you paid for the part of the tax year you worked for them.

Example

Karan changed jobs in the tax year 2018/2019.

From 6 April 2018 to 30 November 2018 she worked for Company A but from 1 January 2019 she started work at Company B.

When leaving Company A Karan received a P45 which shows her personal details, tax code as well as the total amount of tax and national insurance deductions made from 6 April 2018 to 30 November 2018.

When Karan started her new job at Company B she will have handed them her P45 which will give her new Employer sufficient details to ensure the correct deductions are made from her salary from 1 January 2019.  

Then once the tax year has ended on 5 April 2017 she should expect to receive a P60 form by 31 May 2017 from Company B, which will summarise all the tax and national insurance they have deducted from her gross salary.

There is also a box which will show the Gross Pay and Income Tax deducted when she worked for Company A on the P60 form so Karan will be able to see the total tax she has paid for the entire tax year.

What is a P60 Form Used For?

Apart from being a legal requirement for your Employer, there are some other uses for a P60.

To Claim Back Overpaid Tax

Your P60 is official evidence of the tax and national contributions you have made through a tax year (6 April to 5 April).  

If you do find yourself in a situation where you have overpaid tax, you’ll need to use your P60 to prove what you have paid.

Proof of Income

Holding onto your P60 forms may become useful if you need to prove your income for example if you are applying for a loan or mortgage.

To Apply for Tax Credits

If you need to claim tax credits or other state benefits, you will be asked to provide a copy of your P60 form. This is evidence of your earnings.

To Complete your Self Assessment Tax Return

If you are employed and have other sources of income that means you need to complete a tax return, then you’ll need the information on your P60.

You’ll need to disclose all your earnings as well as any tax you have already paid (so you don’t pay too much).

You need to include your the figures from your P60 in the “Employment” section of your tax return.

It is worth holding onto your P60 forms, even if you take a scan and store it online.

Summary

So your P60 is a pretty useful piece of information and you may need it for a variety of reasons like mortgage applications and tax credits.

To recap:

  • The P60 is a statement of all your earnings and deductions during one complete tax year;
  • Your employer must give you one by 31 May each year;
  • The form is evidence that you have paid tax and national insurance, as well as verifying your income for things like mortgage applications;
  • Hold onto your P60 you never know when you are going to need it.

FAQs

What to Do If You Lost Your P60?

If you have lost your P60 then here’s what you need to do about it.

Does a P60 include Pension Contribution Deductions?

No pension deductions will not be shown on your P60. That’s because your P60 shows your taxable pay for the year.

Taxable pay means your gross salary plus any additional amounts you received minus pension contributions.

Do You Get a P60 for Your State Pension

No. It is your own responsibility to keep your own records of the state pension you have received.

What Does R Mean on a P60?

R indicates that you have received a tax refund that your employer has passed onto you. If there is no R then you have paid tax.

Is Your P60 Confidential?

Yes, it is highly confidential. The form contains not just your personal details but also information about your earnings.

For that reason keep it safe and only share it if you are totally sure that the information will not be shared.

Do you get a P60 if You Are Self-Employed?

If you are employed and self-employed then you should get a P60 from your employer.

The information on your P60 only relates to what your employer has paid you and deducted, not your self-employment income.

Therefore you must complete a self-assessment tax return form to declare your self-employment income and pay any additional tax due on them.

Don’t lose your P60. You will need to include details of all your earnings and tax deductions on your self-assessment tax return, along with details of your employer.

Do You Get a P60 When You’re the Director of a Limited Company?

Many self-employed individuals operate through a Limited Company paying themselves through a payroll scheme.

In this case, you will get a P60. It just maybe a bit strange because you are both the Employer and Employer. 

But every employer is legally required to fill out P60 forms by 31 May each year.

Should I Receive a P60 while Claiming Job Seekers Allowance?

Job Seekers Allowance is paid under a PAYE scheme. It’s almost like the Benefits Office is your employer and your JSA is your salary.

Your benefits office should issue you a P60 by the 19 May each year. Unless you found a job during a particular tax year.

Will you receive a P60 from the benefits office if you find a job during the year?

No.

Once you find a job the benefits office will issue you with a P45 which you must give to your new employer.

That way your new employer will have all the information they need to calculate your tax correctly.

For example

During the tax year 2018/2019 (6 April 2018 to 5 April 2019) Carlos was on Job Seekers Allowance and then found a job starting 1 March 2019.

Carlos should expect to receive a P60 by 19 May 2017 from his new employer which will detail his earnings and deductions in his new job from 1 March 2019 to 5 April 2019.

He will not receive a P60 from the Benefits Office but will have a received a P45 dated 28 February 2017 which he needs to pass onto his new employer.

Updated 17 October 2019

Anita Forrest
About Anita Forrest

Anita Forrest is a Chartered Accountant turned entrepreneur who helps the self-employed gain financial confidence when it comes to running the numbers side of their business and filing tax returns with guides, templates and resources on the Go Self-Employed website.