How to register as a Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) subcontractor

In this blog post, we will walk you through the essential steps and requirements for registering as a CIS subcontractor. Whether you are new to the construction industry or an established contractor looking to expand your business, understanding the registration process is vital for your financial success.

How to register

Before you can register for the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) you will need;

  • Your legal business name. This can be a trading name if it’s different to your business name.
  • Your National Insurance (NI) Number
  • The unique taxpayer reference number (UTR) for your business
  • VAT registration number (if you’re VAT registered)

If you’re a subcontractor and a CIS contractor (you pay subcontractors to do construction work), you’ll need to register for CIS as both.

You could be fined if you provide false information and so could anyone who helps you to make a false registration.

Register as a sole trader

If you are a sole trader and already have a unique tax reference number (UTR), then you can register for CIS online. You will need your Government Gateway user ID and password you used when you registered for Self Assessment. You can apply for gross payment status at the same time.

If you do not have a UTR, register as a new business for Self Assessment and choose ‘working as a subcontractor’ when prompted. You’ll be registered for Self Assessment and CIS at the same time.

Register as another type of business

If you are not a sole trader, then fill in the online form for limited companies or the online form for partnerships.

HMRC will then register the partnership separately to your sole trader registration. They will need the partnership UTR and trading name.

You are based abroad

If you are a subcontractor based abroad but do construction work in the UK then you should still register for CIS.