Running a business is hard. From ordering stock and devising marketing strategies to managing employees and maintaining good customer relationships, there’s always something to do.
Then there’s the tax side of things — which can be particularly challenging if you don’t have an accountant to help you fill in and submit the necessary paperwork on time. Whether you have an accountant or not, as a small business owner, you will be well aware of the dreaded Self Assessment tax return.
You may know that the main Self Assessment tax return is referred to as SA100, while the short tax return is the SA200. But there are many other sections and forms associated with Self Assessment, such as Form SA106 for foreign income or gains, Form SA109 for non-UK or dual nationality residents and Form SA800 for partnerships. There’s also an SA302 form, which you may have come across after completing your Self Assessment tax return.
In this guide, we’ll explain what the SA302 form is, why it is needed, who needs one and how to get one.
Also known as a “Tax Calculation Form” or “Self Assessment statement”, an SA302 form is an official document issued by HMRC that shows evidence of a self-employed sole trader or limited company’s earnings for a particular tax year.
While employees have regular payslips and P60 forms to prove their income, self-employed people don’t have these, so they need to provide an SA302 form instead.
Keep reading to find out more.
Self-employed people or those who earn income outside of PAYE (pay as you earn) employment will need an SA302 form if they need to provide evidence of their earnings.
If all or any of your earnings don’t have Income Tax or National Insurance deductions made by your employer, you will need to register for Self Assessment with HMRC (HM Revenue and Customs) and file a tax return to declare your income. Once you’ve done this, an SA302 tax calculation will be generated based on the information you’ve supplied in your return.
Some examples of individuals who may need an SA302 form are:
- Company directors (unless they are employed)
- Contractors operating through a limited company
- Employees with multiple jobs
- Self-employed people
- Sole traders
An SA302 form shows a detailed breakdown of all the taxable income you have declared for a particular tax year. It provides information about your income, tax allowances, what tax you’ve paid and any tax you owe or is owed to you.
The SA302 form is made up of two parts:
This part is a breakdown of all your taxable sources of income and can include the following:
- Dividends from UK companies
- Pay from employment
- Profit from self-employment
- Profit from UK land and property, such as rental income
- Savings interest from UK bank accounts
- UK pensions and state benefits
It also discloses your tax liability and the total amount of tax you owe HMRC.
Tax Year Overview
This part is a statement of your tax bill for that particular tax year, what tax you have paid and any tax that’s outstanding. It verifies that the figure given in the Tax Calculation section is correct.
Once you file your Self Assessment tax return, your SA302 will be available for the previous tax year.
HMRC used to send SA302 forms out automatically, but as of 2017, you need to request one. This can be done in one of four ways:
The easiest way to access your SA302 forms is via your HMRC online account. In your account, you will be able to find SA302 details for the past four years. Here’s how to find your forms:
- Log in to your account using your Government Gateway user ID and password
- Click on “Self Assessment”, then “More Self Assessment Details”
- Select “Get Your SA302 Tax Calculation” or click “Tax Return Options” and select a different year from the drop-down menu
- View your tax calculation and tax overview documents and print them or save them as a PDF
Note that you will be unable to print your documents in the first 72 hours after filing your return.
2. Commercial software
If you file your Self Assessment tax return using commercial software, you should be able to use it to access your SA302 forms. Note that the software may refer to it as something else, for example, “Tax Computation”.
You will be able to print your tax calculation and tax overview documents using the software, but again they will not be ready for printing until 72 hours after sending your return.
If you have trouble printing your SA302 form, you can either contact the company that makes the software or log in to your HMRC account and print your documents from there.
If you filed a paper tax return or you are having problems accessing your documents in your online account, you can call HMRC on 0300 200 3310 to request a printed copy.
You will be asked for your National Insurance number and Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) to verify your account, so make sure you have them to hand when you call.
You will also need to provide your personal details, including your name, date of birth and address.
HMRC will then send your documents in the post to the address they have on file, so it is important to make sure this information is kept up to date. It is also worth noting that it can take up to two weeks for your form to arrive, so if you are using this option, it is wise to plan ahead.
4. Your accountant
If you use an accountant, you can ask them to generate, download and print your SA302 form using their accounting software.
The software they use to do this should be the same as the software they used to submit your tax return — which means they should already have all the necessary information.
Note that if your accountant downloads your form for you to use as proof of earnings, they will need to certify it.
The most common reason for requesting an SA302 form is to provide proof of earnings to a mortgage provider or other lender.
Lenders need to see proof of your income to check whether you can afford to make your monthly repayments.
Like payslips and P60 forms, which a third party issues, lenders can trust that your earnings haven’t been manipulated because your SA302 form is based on your Self Assessment tax return.
You may be asked to provide an SA302 form if you are applying for a:
- Business loan
- Buy-to-let mortgage
- Holiday let mortgage
- Homeowner loan
- Residential mortgage
- Residential re-mortgage
- Second home mortgage
- Personal loan
Traditionally, HMRC would send SA302 forms to lenders like paper receipts, but now it is your responsibility to provide the information. You may find that they will accept a PDF file but bear in mind that not all lenders will accept self-printed versions, and some will require the form to be sent directly from HMRC. To find out whether your lender accepts self-printed SA302 forms from your HMRC online account or accounting software, you can check the list of lenders who do on the HMRC website.
When supplying an SA302 form to a mortgage provider or other lender, it is important to be aware of the following points:
- Your SA302 form must be dated within 18 months of your mortgage or loan application
- You may be required to submit forms for multiple tax years (usually two, but sometimes up to four)
- Your lender may also ask for additional information, such as your Tax Year Overview or assigned business accounts
Some other reasons you might want to access your SA302 forms include getting a better understanding of your tax obligations and bringing a new accountant up to speed with your company’s tax history.
An SA302 form is an official document issued by HMRC that shows evidence of a self-employed sole trader or limited company’s earnings for a particular tax year. An SA302 form gives a detailed breakdown of all the taxable income you have declared for that tax year. It is made up of two parts: Tax Calculation and Tax Year Overview, which contain information about your income, tax allowances, what tax you’ve paid and any tax you owe or is owed to you.
Once you file your Self Assessment tax return, your SA302 will be available for the previous tax year. You can request it in your HMRC online account, by using commercial software, by phoning HMRC or by asking your accountant.
The most common reason for requesting an SA302 form is to provide proof of earnings to a mortgage provider or other lender. Still, you may also want it to get a better understanding of your tax obligations or to bring a new accountant up to speed with your company’s tax history.