Filing VAT Returns Online

Newsletter issue - March 2010.

You may have recently received a letter from the VATman that officially notifies your company or business to file its VAT return online, or face penalties. If your business had a turnover of £100,000 or more in the year ending 31 December 2009 you are legally required to file your VAT returns online, rather than as a paper form, for all periods beginning on or after 1 April 2010. So you can file your VAT return for the quarter to 31 March 2010 on paper, but VAT returns for later periods must be submitted online.

If you don't agree that your turnover was £100,000 or more in the year to 31 December 2009, you need to appeal against the VATman's decision within 30 days of the date of his letter. The VATman has not sent a copy of his letter to us, so please forward it on if you have concerns about this turnover threshold. If you want us to submit your VAT returns online on your behalf we will need that letter as it contains some key details for the registration process.

Even if you have already filed several of your VAT returns online, and your turnover is over £100,000, you will still receive the notification letter from the VATman, including the expensive glossy brochure. If your turnover is currently less than £100,000 per year, you will not have to file your VAT returns online until 2011. The Government has announced that all VAT registered businesses will be required to file their VAT returns online from April 2011, but that requirement is not law yet.

If your business first registers for VAT on or after 1 April 2010 you will be required to file all your VAT returns online from your first VAT return, even if your turnover is way below the £100,000 threshold.

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