TRS "secret guidance" from HMRC

I was alerted by Practical Law today to this: “In an email dated 18 August 2022, HMRC has announced that it has produced some brief step by step guidance to assist with registration on the Trust Registration Service (TRS). The guidance can be requested by sending an email to

You get back 2 pdfs, on registering and claiming/authorising an agent. It is not clear why this is being provided in this fashion like a naughty magazine or perhaps it is a covert sinister collection of email addresses for a watch list database.

Jack Harper


I’d hazard that the ratio for this means of distribution is more the latter than the former.

The entire process appears increasingly like a form of ‘Honesty Box’ governance and oversight.

Michael Fogg
Trusting Willpower Limited

On sending the email, we had a response within 15 minutes, which suggests a fairly simple workflow process to log the requesting party then respond with the PDF documents.

Nothing on the auto-reply to state that information is being retained, though - might this be justified through GDPR exceptions?

Michael Fogg
Trusting Willpower Limited

I’ve just seen the STEP message - which doesn’t actually give the email address!