Insurance companies have now set up a database to retain records of employer’s liability insurance for the requisite 40 years to remove that burden from the employer.  They have been sending out requests for PAYE reference numbers to populate this record.  Employer’s liability insurance is only compulsory for employees with a contract of employment or apprenticeship.


Business records must be kept for up to 7 years (6 tax years worth) for tax purposes.  Records includes receipts, bank statements and ledgers but not general correspondence.

If you are in business as a sole trader or partner then you need to keep personal tax return records for up to 7 years (longer if you submitted your personal tax return late).

If you are VAT registered then you must keep VAT records for at least 6 years.

The New MOSS foreign VAT records will need to be kept for 10 years.

If you employ staff then you need to keep PAYE records for up to 4 years.

If you operate the CIS scheme then need to keep the CIS records for up to 4 years.

A Limited company must keep records for at least 3 years even if not in business and those records must include details of money received and spent, assets and liabilities, goods sold, stock takes and buyers & sellers of wholesale goods.

If you are not in business as a sole trader or partner then you need to keep personal tax return records for up to 3 years (longer if you submitted your return late).

HMRC are now happy for you to keep scanned copies rather than physical records (be sure to scan both sides if there is information on the back) – but do keep up your subscription to the data handling facility.

Scanned or photographed copies of receipts may be attached to computerised accounting records as a method of filing as well as storage.

Any old records may be destroyed, please contact us to collect records from previous years that we may be holding for you or advise if we are authorised to destroy them on  your behalf. 

Share this post