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Register your client’s trust

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Published 17 November 2017, Last updated 15 February 2018

If you're a tax agent or adviser and your client has a trust with a tax liability, you can register it online.


  1. When to register
  2. What you need
  3. How to register
  4. What happens next

When to register

If your client has a trust with a new tax liability, you must register by 5 October of the tax year after either:

  • the trust has been set up
  • it starts to make income or chargeable gains, if this is later

What you need


You’ll need:

  • the name of the trust
  • the trust address and telephone number
  • the date the trust was established
  • details of where the trust is resident


For individual beneficiaries, you need their:

  • name
  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number or passport details

To register:

  • unidentified beneficiaries, you’ll need the description of the beneficiaries from the trust deed
  • company beneficiaries, you’ll need the company beneficiary name and Unique Tax Reference (UTR)
  • charity beneficiaries, you’ll need the charity beneficiary name

Classes of beneficiaries

You can use classes of beneficiaries to identify beneficiaries rather than naming them individually.

A class of beneficiaries can only contain individuals who haven’t yet received any financial or non-financial benefits from the trust.

The title of the class of beneficiary is usually contained in the trust deed, and that description should be used to register the trust.

Once a potential beneficiary receives a financial or non-financial benefit, you must name them individually.

You can use classes to identify all actual and potential beneficiaries if you’re registering more than 10 beneficiaries for either:

  • pension schemes
  • charitable trusts
  • employment benefits

Trustees, settlors and protectors

To register, you must provide all of the following:

  • name
  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number
  • trustee’s telephone number

If you can’t provide the correct National Insurance number you can provide passport details and an address instead. Instructions in the online registration service explain how to do this.

You can’t use the online service to record details of more than 2 settlors. If you need to do this, you’ll have to send the additional information by post.

To register a corporate trustee, you’ll need their:

  • company name
  • company UTR number
  • contact email address


For share assets you need the:

  • share company name
  • number of shares
  • class and type of share
  • value of the shares when the trust received them

For property assets you need the:

  • name of the property or land
  • full value of the property or land
  • value of the asset allocated to the trust

For money assets you’ll need the total amount of money in the trust.

How to register

To register a trust, you need to have an agent services account. If you’ve already got one, you need the User ID and password you created when you set up the account.

If you don’t have an account, you can create one the first time you register a trust. You’ll need:

  • your agency’s UTR or Corporation Tax reference
  • the postcode associated with that reference
  • to have used HMRC Online Services for agents

You must be the person responsible for your agent firm’s tax or administrative matters. After you’ve set up an agent services account, you can add administrators and assistants to your Government Gateway account before registering a trust.

Register your trust online.

You can save your progress, but you can’t update your registration once you submit it.

Record details of more than 2 settlors

You can only record details of up to 2 settlors using the online service. If you need to record more, you should enter the details of the first 2 in the service and send the rest by post to:

HM Revenue and Customs
United Kingdom

If you need to record the details of a large number of settlors because you’re the trustee (or agent acting on behalf of trustees) of a pension scheme or an employment related trust, you should:

  • record the details of 2 of the settlors in the online service
  • use a class to describe the remaining settlors, for example, ‘pension scheme members’ or ‘employees of the company’
  • tell us how many individuals fall within each class – if a corporate entity is a settlor, just provide the name of that corporation or firm

What happens next

We’ll send your client a UTR - you’ll need it to send a tax return using the Self Assessment for Agents online service.