HM Revenue and Customs (also known as "HMRC" or "His Majesty's Revenue and Customs") is the department of the UK government responsible for collecting taxes, paying some forms of benefits and support, and administering other regulatory systems such as National Insurance numbers.

If you are self-employed or run a business, you will likely already have had dealings with HMRC to set up tax and VAT accounts, amongst other things. If not, you may not have needed to contact HMRC before. In either case, HMRC is available to contact by email, phone, post, and via their web chat online.

If you need to contact HMRC for any reason, it is usually easiest to find answers to your queries by setting up an account and communicating online. If you need to call and speak to someone, there are several numbers you can use depending on the purpose of your call.

We are going to take a look at how to contact HMRC by telephone and take you through each of the different helpline services available.

HMRC has multiple contact numbers for the various services they provide. The number you should call depends on your query, and in most cases, you can also find answers and solutions to your issues online or by talking on their web chat service.

If you can, you should try to answer your query online, as when you call HMRC, you can often be waiting on hold for a while, especially during busy hours.

Before we run you through each of the helplines, let's take a look at what you should do before you make a call to HMRC.

Before you call HMRC, you should ensure that all your personal details are up to date on your HMRC account. If you don't already have an account with HMRC, set one up.

For most queries, you should also have your National Insurance number on you when you call.

Before you are connected to an advisor, you will usually be asked a series of questions by a phone that uses speech recognition. You should try and answer the questions it asks for short and simple words and phrases. This helps the system direct you to the correct operator and gives the operator the necessary details regarding your call.

For all of the helpline numbers we go through below, you can also use Relay UK if you cannot hear or speak on the phone or have difficulty communicating. To do this, simply dial 18001, followed by the relevant helpline number.

If you run a business or are self-employed, and you need help or support regarding unpaid taxes due to the pandemic, you can call HMRC's coronavirus helpline.

Coronavirus helpline: 0800 024 1222

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4 pm (closed on weekends and bank holidays).

Self Assessment tax returns are documents for businesses and self-employed people to complete to register their income, so they pay the correct amount of tax.

You can register for and file your tax returns online and update any of your details simply by using your online account. There is also a phone line you can call for assistance.

If you have a National Insurance number and Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference, have them to hand before you make the call.

Self Assessment phone line: 0300 200 3310

Textphone: 0300 200 3319

Calls made from outside of the UK: +44 161 931 9070

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed on weekends and bank holidays.)

Tax credits are tax incentives that allow recipients to deduct the credit from their total tax bill.

Tax credits are available to a whole range of working people on lower incomes. Many people who would qualify for tax credits are unaware that they can claim them.

You may also need to contact HMRC if you have had a change in circumstances that could affect your tax credit status.

If you choose to call, you will need your National Insurance number to hand.

Tax credit helpline: 0345 300 3900

Calls made from outside of the UK: +44 2890 538 192

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed weekends and bank holidays).

It is usually best to call between Tuesday and Thursday from 2 pm to 4 pm when the lines are the least busy.

Child Benefits are available for one parent with a child under the age of 16 or under the age of 20 if they are in education. The claimant may not be eligible (or may only be partially eligible) if they or their partner earns more than £50,000 per year.

You can call HMRC regarding Child Benefit to find out about eligibility, claim or stop Child Benefit, change your personal details, and make a complaint.

HMRC can only discuss a claim with the claimant or someone who has been authorised as a representative by the claimant.

Child Benefit helpline: 0300 200 3100

Calls made from outside of the UK: +44 161 210 3086

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed weekends and bank holidays).

Everyone in the UK who earns more than £12,570 per year pays Income Tax on their earnings. Income Tax is divided into bands, which means that the more you earn, the more you pay.

When you receive a payslip from your employer, you will have a tax code at the top. This tax code informs HMRC, you, and your employer of the Income Tax band you are in.

You can contact HMRC about any changes to your circumstances that might affect your tax code and the rate of Income Tax you pay, or if you are on the wrong code, you can contact them to rectify this.

You should also contact HMRC's Income Tax line with questions regarding the Marriage Allowance, which is a tax scheme that allows one spouse to transfer part of their tax-free allowance to the other.

Income Tax helpline: 0300 200 3300

Calls made from outside of the UK: +44 135 535 9022

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed on weekends and bank holidays).

Phone lines are generally less busy before 10 am.

National Insurance is the UK's social security system. Payments made towards National Insurance ensure your future eligibility for a state pension.

When you turn 16, you are given a National Insurance number that stays the same throughout your life. You should have a card with your National Insurance number, but you can also find it on your payslip, P60, tax returns, and official letters about tax, pensions, or benefits.

If you have a personal tax account with HMRC, you can also find your National Insurance number there.

You can contact the HMRC National Insurance line to check your National Insurance record, find any gaps in your National Insurance contributions, check your state pension, and inform HMRC of any changes in your life. You can also call with questions regarding statutory payments, the married women’s reduced rate, and parents' and carers' credits.

Before calling, make sure you have your National Insurance number with you.

National Insurance helpline: 0300 200 3500

Textphone: 0300 200 3519

Calls from outside of the UK: + 44 191 203 7010

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed on weekends and Bank Holidays).

If you are an employer, you can call HMRC with any inquiries regarding your payroll.

Employers' helpline: 0300 200 3200

Calls made from outside of the UK: +44 151 268 0558

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed on weekends and bank holidays).

If your call is not urgent, you should use HMRC's webchat service instead.

If you are self-employed or run a business, you will likely have a VAT account with HMRC that allows you to claim back VAT on certain expenses.

You can manage most aspects of your VAT account online. However, if you have an urgent problem or question, you can call HMRC's VAT helpline.

Before calling, ensure you have your Fulfilment House Due Diligence Scheme number (FHDDS), postcode, and VAT registration number.

VAT helpline: 0300 200 3700

Calls made from outside of the UK: +44 2920 501 261

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed weekends and bank holidays).

Phone lines are less busy between 8.30 am and 11 am.

There has been a recent rise in scam calls, emails, and messages purporting to be from HMRC. If you receive a call or other contact claiming to be HMRC that asks you for money, bank details, or other personal information, you should report it.

There is no phone line to call to report these scams. Instead, you should either:

  • fill out an online form on the HMRC website
  • forward details of suspicious emails to HMRC’s phishing team at [email protected]
  • forward suspicious text messages to 60599

HMRC will never send notifications of a tax rebate or ask you to disclose personal or financial information by text message or email. If you are suspicious about a call you have received, hang up and then call back.

If HMRC needs to contact you about anything confidential, they will reply by phone or post.

The Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) is a system in which contractors in the construction industry deduct money from subcontractors' payments and pass it onto HMRC. These deductions count as contributions to the subcontrators' National Insurance contributions.

Contractors must register for the scheme. Subcontractors do not have to register, but deductions are taken from their payments at a higher rate if they’re not registered.

You can call HMRC if you have questions about the Construction Industry Scheme.

CIS helpline: 0300 200 3210

Calls made from outside of the UK: +44 161 930 8706

Opening times: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm (closed on weekends and bank holidays).