Northern Ireland

NI taxi drivers now need to comply with tax checks when renewing licence

Taxi drivers in Northern Ireland now have to comply with new tax checks (Nick Ansell/PA)
Taxi drivers in Northern Ireland now have to comply with new tax checks (Nick Ansell/PA) Taxi drivers in Northern Ireland now have to comply with new tax checks (Nick Ansell/PA)

Almost 8,000 taxi drivers in Northern Ireland now need to complete tax checks when renewing their operating licence.

The checks have been introduced to promote tax compliance within the industry.

The Department for Infrastructure will administer the process in Northern Ireland, which involves making sure drivers have completed their tax check before their licence applications can be considered.

Marc Gill, director of individuals and small business compliance, HMRC, said: “While most taxi drivers in Northern Ireland pay their taxes accurately and on time, we want to level the playing field and tackle the small minority who don’t.

“The hidden economy is estimated to cost the UK Government £2 billion in unpaid taxes, which deprives funds for the vital public services we all rely on.

“By linking tax compliance to licence renewal, the government hopes to discourage participation in the hidden economy and encourage drivers to fulfil their tax obligations.”

The checks were rolled out in England and Wales in April 2022, where more than 120,000 people have already gone through the process.

When renewing their licence, drivers will need to use a Government Gateway account to complete the tax check on GOV.UK.

After answering a few questions about their tax registration, HMRC will provide applicants with a tax check code.

This code must be given to the Department for Infrastructure before they can proceed with the licence renewal application.