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  • Writer's pictureBaldwin's Accountancy Services

How to Register as Self-Employed

Updated: Jan 2


If you're ready to take the plunge and become self-employed in the United Kingdom, one of the essential steps is registering with HMRC. This process may seem daunting at first, but fear not, as we've put together a comprehensive guide to walk you through it step by step. By the end of this blog, you'll be well on your way to becoming a self-employed individual and managing your taxes effectively.

Step 1: Determine Your Self-Employment Status

Before you start the registration process, it's crucial to confirm that you are indeed self-employed. HMRC considers you self-employed if you work for yourself and are responsible for running your own business. This can include freelancers, sole traders, or people in partnerships.

Step 2: Gather Necessary Information

You'll need specific information to complete the registration, including:

  • Your National Insurance Number

  • Your contact details

  • Personal identification (e.g., passport or driving license)

  • Business details, including name, nature of your business, and address

  • Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) if you've previously registered with HMRC

Step 3: Visit the HMRC Website

The easiest way to register as self-employed with HMRC is through their online portal. Visit the HMRC website ( and select "Register for Self Assessment."

Step 4: Start the Registration Process

Once you're on the HMRC website, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the "Start Now" button to begin the registration process.

  2. You'll be asked to create a Government Gateway user ID and password. Keep these credentials secure, as you'll need them for future interactions with HMRC.

Step 5: Complete the Registration Form

You'll need to fill in several details in the registration form. Here's what you'll typically be asked for:

  • Your full name and address.

  • Date of birth.

  • National Insurance Number.

  • Employment history (if applicable).

  • Information about your business, including its name, address, and nature.

  • The date you started your self-employment.

Step 6: Choose Your Accounting Method

HMRC allows self-employed individuals to choose between traditional accounting or cash basis accounting. Consider consulting an accountant or financial advisor to determine which method is best for your business.

Step 7: Submit Your Registration

Double-check all the information you've entered to ensure its accuracy. Once you're confident everything is correct, submit your registration to HMRC. You'll receive a confirmation email once your registration is complete.

Step 8: Await Your UTR and Activation Code

After submitting your registration, HMRC will send you a Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) and an activation code in separate mailings. Your UTR is a unique identifier for your tax records.

Step 9: Activate Your Online Account

Using the activation code received, log into your HMRC account to activate your online account. This will allow you to file your tax returns and manage your self-employed tax affairs online.

Step 10: Start Filing Your Taxes

Once you've registered and activated your account, you can begin filing your self-assessment tax returns. HMRC requires you to do this annually, so make sure to meet the deadlines.


Registering as self-employed with HMRC is a crucial step in your journey to becoming a successful self-employed individual in the UK. Follow these steps, and you'll be well on your way to managing your taxes effectively and ensuring compliance with HMRC regulations. If you ever find yourself in need of guidance or have questions along the way, remember that we're here to help.

At Baldwin's Accountancy Services, we understand that the process of becoming self-employed and dealing with taxes can be challenging. We have a team of experts ready to provide you with the support and information you need. Don't hesitate to get in touch with us if you have any questions or require assistance at any stage of your self-employment journey. We're just a phone call or email away, and we're here to make your transition to self-employment as smooth as possible.

Good luck on your self-employed journey, and remember, you're not alone in this endeavour. We're here to assist you every step of the way!


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