VAT Basics

A form that you file with HMRC, often four times a year is known as VAT Return. It basically shows how much VAT is due for you to pay them. By not registering with VAT, you won’t be able to file VAT returns.

The VAT return = the amount calculation of VAT due on sales-the amount of reclaimable VAT on purchases.

Finally, the VAT return you will obtain will then be payable to HMRC.

When does a business have to register for VAT?

If your annual turnover goes beyond the threshold of current VAT then you will be required to register with HMRC for VAT. So, complete and submit the VAT returns to HMRC, often quarterly.

Flat Rate VAT

VAT Returns denote a burden of administrative work for large business owners as compared to the small businesses having an annual turnover of £150,000 or less (current figures, may be subject to change) the Flat Rate Scheme may be the best alternative.

A business has to pay a fixed, flat-rate percentage of gross turnover under the Flat Rate scheme in order to ascertain how much VAT need to be paid by HMRC quarterly.

However, there will be a normal VAT charge on all of the ‘supplies’ a small business make, and issue VAT receipts to customers in the normal way, the quarterly VAT return should be more direct because it needs the business for calculating calculate its total sales and thereafter a flat rate of VAT gets applied to the VAT-inclusive value.

The rate that businesses employ to ascertain their VAT rate under the Flat Rate Scheme will differ based on the products and services the business provides.

How do businesses register for Flat VAT rate scheme?

For applying the Flat Rate Scheme a business must fulfill a number of eligibility criteria:

How to file VAT Returns?

You are required to have a VAT number and a VAT online account. By using HMRC’s free online service or commercial accounting software, you can easily submit your VAT Return.


You are required to have:

You can also take the help of an accounting software for submitting your VAT return directly to HMRC. This means you don’t need to enter your figures individually in HMRC’s online service.

You can also find one of the best accountants in London for doing HMRC filing for you.

VAT Inspections

VAT officers can visit your business to supervise your VAT records and ensure that you are paying and reclaiming the right VAT amount. HMRC normally contact you for arranging a visit.

HMRC provide you 7 days’ notice. They will confirm what kind of information they wish to see, how long it possibly take and if they wish to inspect your premises. You can also ask them delaying your visit.

HMRC can also visit you without any appointment. They can make a phone call to you regarding VAT.

After the Visit, HMRC will confirm you in writing:

VAT Registration

You need to provide details to HMRC like :