UK VAT Returns Services
Our UK VAT services allow you to stop worrying and focus your mind on growing your business confident your tax is in the hands of professionals.
Register your business for UK VAT
Prepare and file your quarterly VAT returns
Filing everything on time, every time–no missed deadlines
Ensure you are 100% fully compliant with HMRC
Our VAT Services
We handle all aspects of UK VAT for both UK based sellers. If you need it, we can also help point you in the right direction with EU VAT and Intrastat declarations.
What is VAT?
VAT is a sales tax, it is designed to tax the end user of a product or service. What makes it unusual and complex for most, is that although it is charged on consumers, you–the business owner, actually collected it on behalf of HMRC. Yes, HMRC has outsourced their tax collecting to you, and yes, they take it very seriously if you fail to collect it properly.
Who needs to register for VAT?
The rules change depending on whether you are a UK-based business selling in the UK, or an overseas business selling in the UK. Here is what you need to know:
You do not need to register for UK VAT until your turnover exceeds £85,000 in a rolling 12 month period. This rolling 12 month period is important because it means your registration is not limited to your business’s financial year.
Please note, there is an option to register voluntarily for VAT if your turnover is under £85,000. This can be beneficial, however, in our experience as specialists, we do not usually recommend you register for VAT until you are legally obliged to.
If you are unsure or believe your situation is unique, book a free consultation today by clicking here and we will walk you through your options.
If you are an overseas seller, there is no threshold. You must register for UK VAT if you want to sell goods in the UK via an online marketplace.
Unsure if you are an overseas seller or if you need to register for VAT? Simply get in touch with us and we will help you out.
When are the VAT Deadlines?
Your deadline for paying and submitting your VAT return is the same: You have 1 month and 7 days, starting from the end of your VAT period, to submit and pay your quarterly VAT liability.
Split into quarterly periods, they are commonly based on your initial VAT registration date and can be the following:
Do not know your quarterly period and want to find out? Check your VAT certificate and/or your government gateway account.
VAT Surcharges and Penalties
Regarded as one of the harshest and toughest of all the taxes, HMRC’s VAT penalty regime will record a “default” against your company is either of the following happens:
- They do not receive your VAT return by the deadline (applies even if your return is ‘nil’ or shows a repayment due from HMRC)
- Your full payment for the VAT is not cleared in their account by the deadline
If you receive a “default”, you could face a surcharge of up to 15% on any VAT due, so it is vital you do not “default” on payment or submission of your VAT returns.
If HMRC thinks there is a risk you will not pay your VAT, you will be marked as an “at risk” seller.
In this case, you may be asked to pay a security deposit, which will be retained by HMRC if you do not pay your VAT.
What about VAT in other EU Nations (including Amazon’s PAN EU Programme)?
We can assist you with UK VAT, however, because VAT is a complex tax, we would recommend you speak to a professional from the country at hand.
Fortunately for you, we have developed a highly-rated network of contacts that we open up to our clients when they are considering expanding into new EU marketplaces (including being able to handle all aspects of “Pan EU”).
When to register for VAT in other EU Countries?
Commonly, you will have two things to consider when looking at EU VAT: Are you making distance sales, or are your goods being held locally?
This is where your goods are being held in one place (e.g. the UK), then shipped to another country. Every country has its own threshold for distance selling, if you exceed this threshold, you have to register for VAT in that individual country.
If you do not cross that threshold, you do not need to register. However, you still have to charge VAT as if you were making sales as usual.
Goods Held Locally
If your goods are being held locally (e.g. in a warehouse) in an EU country, you will usually have to register for VAT in that country–regardless of your sales turnover.
Unsure if you need to register for VAT in a particular EU country? Simply get in touch with us by clicking the ‘Contact Us’ tab in the top right corner of this page and we will help you out.
Do you despatch goods from the UK to other EU countries? You may need to file an Intrastat declaration.
Your current threshold for this, is a combined £250k per year. For example, if you have distance sales of £10k per year to 25 EU countries, £250k to a single EU country, or any combination resulting in £250k in distances sales, you have to register for Intrastat returns on top of any VAT returns you may also have to do.
Stop worrying about VAT and speak to an accountant who can help.
Ecommerce Accountants LLP
1 Mark Square
Telephone: 020 7520 2676
Registered Company Number: OC413282
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