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What is My Tax Code?

By: J.A.J Aaronson - Updated: 16 Apr 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Tax Code Income Hmrc Her Majesty’s

Every taxpayer in the UK has a tax code. This short series of numbers and letters is used by whoever pays your income (whether that is an employer or a pension provider) in order to ascertain how much tax you should be paying.

Tax Code Format

Generally, your tax code will be composed of one letter and a series of numbers. Most frequently, the letter determines how the number should be interpreted. Alternatively, your code may be composed of two letters and no numbers, or a 'D' followed by a zero. In these cases, different rules apply.

If your tax code is a series of numbers in front of one or two letters, two main methods of interpreting the code should be used. In the first instance, in a tax code in which the letter is followed by numbers, multiplying the numbers by 10 will give the total amount that you are permitted to earn in a year before you must pay tax. This is the case regardless of which letter appears in your code.

However, the individual letter does determine the other meanings of your code. The letter that is most likely to appear in your tax code is 'L'. This means that you are entitled to the basic Personal Allowance, which for the tax year 2016-17 is £11,000. Some other common letters that you might find in your tax code are listed below:

  • P appears for those between the ages of 65 and 74 who are entitled to the full personal allowance.
  • V appears for those between the ages of 65 and 74 who are entitled to the full personal allowance as well as the married couple allowance.
  • Y appears for those aged 75 or older who are entitled to the full personal allowance.
  • T appears for those from whom HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) requires more information to determine how much tax you must pay.

Alternative Codes

In some cases, tax codes will take the form of two letters and no number, or a 'D' followed by a zero. This is normally because you have more than one source of income. If, for example, your code includes a 'BR', all of your income will be taxed at the basic rate of 20%. If your code begins with a 'D' and is followed by a zero, all of your income will be taxed at the higher rate of 40%. If your code begins with 'D' and is followed by a 1, all of your income will be taxed at the additional rate of 50%. Finally, if your code includes an 'NT', your income (whether it is 'earned' or a pension) will not be taxed at all.

Your tax code may appear on a number of different documents. If you are employed and paying tax by the PAYE System, your tax code will appear on your pay slip and on the P45 form that your previous employer will have given you. If you receive a pension, you will be notified of your tax code at the beginning of each year. It will appear on your 'notice of coding', which will be forwarded to you by your Tax Office. If you think that your tax code is incorrect, you should inform your Tax Office immediately.

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[Add a Comment]
Hi please help me I am working 41 hrs a week at a rate of £8.00 an hour, I have taken on a second job which gives me an extra 16 hrs a month sometimes it's only 12 hrs extra a month, is it worth my while as I don't want to be hit hard with tax, please help me thanks
Peebles - 16-Apr-17 @ 6:51 PM
I left HM Forces in Nov 2016 and started a new job straight away. I still have not received my P45 from HM Forces but when I started my new job I filled in a P60. I've just received a document showing my 'Personal Allowance', 'Tax Code' and 'Tax-free Amount'. The tax code I have been given is 483T. Could you please explain what this is and if you think i'll be due a Feb ate in April 2017?
Woodsy - 8-Mar-17 @ 9:23 PM
What does tax code 26T mean? It's the tax code I got given on my second job.
Marty - 2-Sep-16 @ 5:13 PM
Dan - Your Question:
Hi my tax code use to be 1000l then changed to 600l and now it's 700l can someone please help me with what these codes mean!!!

Our Response:
You can see more information via the gov.uk link here. I hope this helps.
TheTaxGuide - 11-Mar-16 @ 2:37 PM
Hi my tax code use to be 1000l then changed to 600l and now it's 700l can someone please help me with what these codes mean!!!
Dan - 11-Mar-16 @ 7:58 AM
@Glen - As specified in the article, if your code begins with a 'D' and is followed by a zero, all of your income will be taxed at the higher rate of 40%. Therefore, if you think the coding is wrong, you would need to contact the HMRC directly in order to have your tax code rectified. You should be eligible for a tax rebate if the code has been calculated incorrectly. I hope this helps.
TheTaxGuide - 14-Jul-15 @ 10:10 AM
hi I m working two jobs the first job has w1 and the second job has dow1 that's where im paying too much tax why pls help
glen - 11-Jul-15 @ 2:29 AM
I am an employee and pay tax and NI. I also work part time self employed so Which is the best and most hassle free way for me to pay my tax for self employment????
Pinklady - 21-May-15 @ 12:02 PM
@Bobbin - The number 750 relates to £7,500 which is the amount of pay which can be earned free of tax over one year. You'll have to sort it out with HMRC if you think it's wrong.
Cal - 23-Mar-15 @ 1:56 PM
my tax code since I started my new job is 750L this seems a bit low and I can't find any information on why 750 has been applied. Can anyone help?
Bobbin - 19-Mar-15 @ 11:19 PM
@abigail - The letter 'T' is used if your tax office is aware you need to renew your code and/or if your tax affairs are more complicated i.e you might have another income. You can get in touch via the link here . If you can't get through by telephone, you can also write to the HMRC. If you have paid too much tax, you will get it back in the form of a rebate. I hope this helps.
TheTaxGuide - 16-Mar-15 @ 2:23 PM
I started my job in September 2014 and for the first month I paid emergency tax. then my tax code was changed to 500t? I asked my employer what this means and they don't know and I also get taxed nearly £200 a month. I try getting through to hm revenue but they never answer the phone im always in a queue for at least an hour. can someone please help me? am I due a tax rebate?
abigail - 13-Mar-15 @ 1:03 PM
Hi, I do 15 hours a week of self employed music lessons and submit an annual tax return for this. I also do 3 days a week in a retail job at almost minimum wage. My tax code for this job is BR 0 and my overall earnings per year are around £20 000. Am I paying too much tax? Or is there a way that I could be on a better tax code with the retail job? Thanks, M
matt - 15-Oct-14 @ 2:20 PM
My husbands tax code is 315p while mine is 706p we are both directors. and over 65 what is our personal allowance
dillydaydream - 16-Sep-14 @ 1:45 PM
Any idea what tax code 072/m4 would be? Have searched all over the net with no joy Had a surprise letter not so long ago saying I may not have paid enough tax in my old job in 2008/2009 ?? Are they for real its not my fault they mucked it up :-( never be able to afford to pay it back now
Tenbysarah - 26-Sep-12 @ 10:39 PM
Hi i have just recently started a second job where i am earning £200 a week.my tax code is BRon that wage slip. Will i get taxed 20% on my first job too or just on my second job.
B - 22-Jul-12 @ 11:57 AM
The people at HMRC are totally incompetant and inept. It takes months to straighten anything out mainly because they have shut so many local offices, do not have enought actual people to talk to and expect you to wait 30 mins on 0845 number to talk to a clueless person. And they want to go 100% computerised.We are charging HMRC £20 per letter and £2 postage costs each time - seems fair.
FRUSTRATED - 9-Jul-12 @ 11:04 AM
My tax code is BR even though i only have one job. I have sent in a form to my local tax office for the right code, but still have not heard from them. can you please attach me the right form for me to be able to claim back the over paid tax. Thank You Karen
Buffer - 1-Jun-12 @ 2:35 PM
@kylie_kiki People under the age of 65 currently have a basic annual tax allowance of £8,105 giving a tax code of 810L. Tax code '0T' means your allowances have been used up or reduced to nil and any income is taxed at the relevant tax rates. I suggest you contact your Tax Office to find out what's going on!
SASSY - 24-May-12 @ 4:36 PM
im 21 and my tax code is OT, is this correct?
kylie_kiki - 24-May-12 @ 4:26 PM
Where do I find my tax code? I need it to transfer some money
jan - 17-Mar-11 @ 5:04 PM
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