The Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) largely applies to contractors and subcontractors involved in mainstream construction work. In some cases businesses that have a high annual spend on construction, without this being their core business may also fall under the scheme as contractors.

Once you have registered for CIS status HMRC will send you your UTR (Unique Tax Reference) number. This will identify you on their systems and enable us to pay you deducting only 20% CIS tax. The UTR is a unique set of 10 digits.

If you do not register before starting work legally we have to make a higher CIS tax deduction from your payments of 30%.

Once you are registered for CIS status tax deductions are 20%. If you were not fully registered before starting work you may be able to claim the difference in CIS tax back (for the period you paid 30%) via your end of year tax return.

What is a CIS card?

CIS cards used to be issued to contractors and subcontractors in the construction industry. This was replaced by the much simpler unique taxpayer reference (UTR) number in 2007.