• John Massey

Should your organisation pay the ICO data protection fee?


Only you can decide if your organisation should pay the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) data protection fee.


This article will help with your decision by pointing you towards relevant guidance.


Why has ICO written to you?


The ICO writes to any registered company address where it believes a data protection fee payment may be due.


How much is the fee?


It’s £40 or £60 for most organisations, including charities and small and medium-sized businesses.


Should your organisation pay the fee?


You must pay a data protection fee to the ICO if you’re a business, organisation or sole trader processing personal data, unless you’re exempt.


We highly recommend that you complete ICO's self-assessment questionnaire, which will help you decide: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-fee/self-assessment/


The ICO provides specific guidance for business types/sectors. These can be found by doing an internet search for "paying a data protection fee [your business sector]", e.g. searching "paying a data protection fee construction" returns this guide, including FAQs: https://ico.org.uk/cst


One of the most relevant FAQs for micro businesses tends to be:


I only hold names, addresses and contact details of my customers – do I need to pay?

If the information you are holding about people is only for the purposes of keeping your own accounts and records, such as keeping records of purchases, sales or other transactions to ensure the relevant payments, deliveries or services happen, then you are likely to be exempt from the requirement to pay.


However, this specifically excludes information processed by or obtained from credit reference agencies and any business for the purpose of credit checking.


Once you've completed the self-assessment questionnaire, you'll need to either:


  1. Let ICO know if your organisation does not need to pay the fee (click Start): https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-fee/exemptions/

  2. Register as a new organisation and pay the fee: https://ico.org.uk/registration/new


Would you like help to pay less tax? Feel free to get in touch or check out our related posts 👇

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