Claiming back tax

Most teachers will be members of a professional body and/or union. As teachers, we are entitled to claim back any tax paid to us on the money we have paid as professional fees, and are entitled to do so for the past four years.

There are various companies around that will help you do this, but they will take a cut of the money you are entitled to. However, claiming back tax yourself is really quick and easy to do – and you’ll get to keep all the money yourself!

You will need:

  1. A copy of the P87 form (available from the HMRC website here)
  2. Your national insurance number (you’ll find it on your payslip, your P60 etc)
  3. Your pay number (from your payslip)
  4. Your employer PAYE reference number (on my P60 it is called a HM Revenue & Customs Office and Reference – it’s a 3 digit number followed by mixture of letters and numbers)
  5. The amount you’ve paid to your union for each of the last 4 years (if you don’t know these send an e-mail to your union and they’ll let you know)

Once you’ve collected that information, fill in the form, pop it in the post, and in two or three weeks time you’ll end up with several letters from HMRC. One of these will advise you of your new tax code (so you don’t have to repeat this process in the future), and one of them will contain a cheque.

I did this three weeks ago. This week I got a cheque for nearly £140 – all for the price of a second class stamp!

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One Response to “Claiming back tax”

  1. Thank you! This post motivated me to finally get around to doing this. In record time (my form was sent in over Christmas holidays, I received a reply less than 2 weeks later) I have a new tax code for this year and a nice cheque. Very nice.

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