When Do I Need To Register As Self Employed

Started a side hustle? Earning a bit extra on the side or considering self-employment in the UK? One common challenge you might face is understanding when to register as self-employed. Don't worry; we've got you covered.

Arjun Kumar
Arjun Kumar
Jan 25, 2024

Becoming self-employed in the UK is a big step, and it can sometimes feel like navigating a maze. Whether you're earning rental income, operating a business, or starting a freelance gig, there are specific rules to follow. By the time you finish reading this article, you'll know exactly when it's time to register as self-employed, ensuring you stay on the right side of the tax authorities.

When Do I Need To Register As Self-Employed?

The rule is simple: register as self-employed as soon as you start working for yourself, even if it's just a small gig. It's not about the size of your venture; it's about doing your own thing.

But here's the catch – you should register before the 5th of October in your business's second tax year. For example, if you began your self-employment in July 2023, you'd need to register by October 5, 2024. Missing this deadline could lead to penalties, and nobody wants that.

How To Register As Self-Employed?

Now you know when you need to register as self-employed. Let’s find out how to do that:

Go to the HMRC Website:

The first stop is the HMRC (Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs) website, it's like your online guide for all things tax-related in the UK.

Find the Self-Employed Registration Page:

On the website, search for the "Register for Self-Assessment" page. This is where you officially let the tax folks know you're starting your self-employed adventure.

Fill in the Form:

You'll need to provide some basic information, like your name, address, National Insurance number, and contact details. There is no complicated jargon here – just straightforward details.

Receive Your Unique Tax Reference (UTR) Number:

After you've submitted your form, you'll get your UTR number. Think of it as your tax ID. You'll use this number whenever you deal with tax matters, so keep it safe.

Complete Your Self-Assessment:

Once you're registered, you'll need to complete self-assessment tax returns every year. This form lets you report your income and expenses. Remember, double-check your figures is key and with Taxd, you can ensure complete accuracy.

Pay Your Tax:

When the time comes, you'll pay your tax. HMRC will let you know how much you owe.

And that's it – you're officially registered as self-employed in the UK.

Responsibilities of Being Self-Employed

Being self-employed in the UK brings its own set of responsibilities. While it offers flexibility and independence, it also means you're in charge of managing certain things. Here's a breakdown in simple terms:

Keeping Financial Records:

You'll need to keep track of your income and expenses to help you calculate your taxes accurately. Simple spreadsheets or even a notebook can do the job. Otherwise, you can even take the help of a self-employed tax calculator.

Paying National Insurance:

As a self-employed person, you'll be responsible for paying National Insurance contributions. It's a way to ensure you're covered for certain benefits like the state pension.

Budgeting for Taxes:

Unlike employees, you won't have taxes automatically deducted from your income. You need to set aside money to cover your tax bill when it's due.

Understanding Tax Deductions:

You can often deduct legitimate business expenses from your income to reduce your tax bill. This includes costs related to your work. While you can manage many aspects on your own, it's a good idea to consider professional advice. Taxd can help you navigate the complexities of self-employment.


In the world of self-employment, understanding your responsibilities is the first step to a successful journey. With straightforward guidance, you can navigate the tax and financial aspects with ease. At Taxd, we specialise in assisting self-employed individuals to meet their tax obligations while focusing on your passion and business.


1. What's the first step to register as self-employed?

The first step is to register with HMRC.

2. How can I keep track of my income and expenses?

Use basic spreadsheets or a simple notebook to maintain income and expense records.

3. When is the deadline for filing Self Assessment tax returns?

The deadline is typically January 31st each year.

4. Can I deduct business-related expenses from my income?

Yes, legitimate expenses can reduce your tax bill.

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