End of Manual VAT ReturnsHM Revenue & Customs’ have announced that they plan to phase out paper VAT Returns from April 2010.

Registering and submitting your return online will soon become compulsory.

The main benefits of online filing of VAT returns suggested by HMRC are:

  • Online submission is faster as there are no postal delays to worry about.
  • Online submission is more secure.
  • Online submission is more reliable as an on-screen acknowledgement is displayed.
  • Electronic payment is mandatory but can be made by direct debit which allows you up to 10 extra days to pay. Alternatively, if you do not wish to pay by direct debit, then you can pay electronically by BACS.
  • Refunds can be obtained quicker due to faster submission of the Return.

Businesses with turnover in excess of £100,000 must adopt this change by April 2010 but smaller businesses can delay a bit longer.

We have developed our systems to help both existing and potential clients.

Your options are:

1. Deal with this change yourself. We can help guide you through the process.

2. Send your Return to us and we will file it for you (see below).

3. If you use a computerised accounts program such as SAGE it is possible (if you have the correct version) that the Returns can be filed electronically from this software. If you are in any doubt please call us and we will try to help.

Our New VAT Filing Service

Crowthers will perform the following work:

1. Initial set-up of your VAT online registration.

2. Electronic submission of your completed VAT Returns to Customs & Excise (you will simply need to fax, scan or post your figures for entry in boxes 1 to 9 to us no later than the 14th of the following month in which the Return is due and we will look after the rest).

3. Send you an acknowledgement from Customs & Excise that your Return has been electronically submitted and the date payment is due (if applicable). This acknowledgement will be your copy of the VAT Return to keep as part of your business records.

Our fees for this service will be fixed at £50.00 plus VAT for each VAT Return filed and these fees are payable under a quarterly Direct Debit arrangement.

PS – please note that the VAT rate increases from 15% to 17.5% on 1 January 2010.