Your guide to CIS registration

All contractors must register with HMRC for the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS). Registering allows contractors to manage their tax and employment risk, and subcontractors the opportunity to make regular contributions towards their national insurance (NI) and tax.  

Although it’s not compulsory for subcontractors to register for CIS, one of the benefits of signing up means tax and NI is deducted at a rate of 20% instead of the higher 30%.     

How to register for CIS online if you are a contractor 

Before registering online for CIS, you must first register as a contractor via the Government’s website 

As a contractor, you need to confirm each subcontractor’s employment status, and you will also need to verify each subcontractor with HMRC before you can start paying them. HMRC will then confirm if the subcontractor is registered with CIS and the rate of deduction you need to use.  

How Indigo can help 

Indigo is a CIS commercial contracting company and takes on the role of a commercial contractor, removing the link between a contractor and a subcontractor. We verify the subcontractor with HMRC and engage under professionally vetted and bespoke contracts. 

We give you peace of mind that your contractors are protected from reclassification by HMRC, and carry the risk ensuring you would never have to go to court.  

Just one payment to us and we take care of the rest, freeing up your time to concentrate on more important tasks.  

Find out more about the benefits of working with Indigo on our dedicated CIS page.

How to register for CIS online if you are a subcontractor 

To sign up to CIS online, the following information is required: 

  • Legal business name – the trading name can also be given if it’s different from the business name 
  • National Insurance (NI) number 
  • The Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) number for your business 
  • Value added tax (VAT) registration number (if the business is VAT registered) 

How to find your UTR number 

If you’ve registered for self-assessment in the past with HMRC, you will find your UTR number: 

  • On the front page of your previous tax returns 
  • On any self-assessment documents, HMRC has sent you such as notices to file a return and payment reminders 
  • In your online Government Gateway account under ‘self-assessment’ section 

If you’ve never had a UTR number, you can get this by registering for self-assessment at HMRC. Make sure you have your National Insurance number to hand before you start. 

  1. Register for HMRC’s online service at the Government Gateway
  2. Use the service to enrol for self-assessment
  3. After enrolment, HMRC will send your UTR activation code in the post
  4. Activate your UTR number using the activation code

Please contact us if we can help you with CIS or signing up to CIS online.

Or find out more about the benefits of working with Indigo on our dedicated CIS page.




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