You need to register for VAT if you are in the process of starting a new business, wish to register for an existing business or taking over an existing business. There are two ways in which you can register for VAT. They are as following:
In the following paragraphs we shall take a close look at all the rules and guidelines needed to fill in the form. The answers correspond to the questions given in the form.
Business contact details
The address should be in the United Kingdom. Please ensure that you do not use an accountant’s address, a PO Box or a ‘care of’ address. If you do so, the form will be returned by HMRC for correction.
If you are applying to register for UK VAT, but presently not residing in the UK, you need to deal directly with HMRC or the alternative is to appoint a tax representative in the UK.
To register direct with HMRC, please send your application form to: HMRC VAT Registration Service
HMRC VAT Registration Service
To appoint a tax representative to handle your UK VAT affairs, please complete form VAT1TR. For this you need to visit www.gov.uk/government/publications/vat-appointment-of-tax-representative-vat1tr
You also need to furnish your phone number so that HMRC can contact you if a need arises for the same.
Business activities that you indulge in
You need to provide a full description of the business activities that you carry out. It includes:
- The type of goods and services you supply
- You also need to mention if your business is retail or you are a wholesale supplier.
Please pay attention to the word” full description” It implies that you need to be very specific about the business that you carry out. For example, instead of just mentioning that you are into building activities, you need to mention very clearly that you are plasterer, electrician, plumber, etc. Another example of vague reference is consultancy where as financial consultancy, management consultancy, etc is more appropriate.
If you’ve not started trading yet
Please enter details of your intended business activities.
If your business has more than one activity
Enter any other activities in the ‘Other activities’ box.
If you are in a business of purchasing, selling or letting of land or property
You need to furnish additional details to HMRC if you are involved in above mentioned business activities. You have in addition to VAT 1 form also need to fill and submit VAT5L VAT registration - land and property form.
If you wish to opt to tax land or property you’ll need to complete either a VAT1614A Notification of an option to tax land and/or buildings or a VAT1614H application for permission to opt.
Are you (or any of the partners or directors in this business) currently involved, or in the last 2 years have been involved, in any other business in the UK or Isle of Man (VAT registered or not) either as a sole proprietor, partner or director?
Include any other business where partners or directors of the business have been involved and are making this application.
If the only previous involvement of the directors was with companies that were members of a corporate group, you need only enter the names of the holding companies.
If you are registering a company that is a part of a corporate group, then in that case you are required to enter only the name of the holding company.
If any of the holding companies you enter are VAT registered or are part of a VAT group, enter their VAT Registration Numbers.
UK bank or building society account
UK bank or building society account must be held in the UK and this account name should be same as that of the business name you are registering with HMRC. This is important as HMRC will refund any VAT owed to the business in the same account. The payment will be made electronically.
However, there are certain accounts that can receive electronic transfers. You need to confirm beforehand whether your account can or it is not possible.
When you are applying for building account, you must submit copies of any correspondence received from your bank or building society. In case you do not have a UK bank account, you need to provide an application for it in a separate sheet of paper.
Are you registering for VAT because you’ve taken over a Business?
You already have taken over or in the process of taking over a business or at least a part of that business as a going concern. You have already changed or in the process of changing the legal status of a VAT registered business.
By going concern it means that you are taking over a business or a part of that business irrespective of whether you wish to run the business in the same way or not.
The change in ‘legal status’ means the change in business i.e. from a sole proprietorship to a partnership or a limited company.
Are you interested in keeping the previous owner VAT number?
Under certain circumstances, you can be allotted the same VAT number. In case, you are allotted the same number, you will be:
Responsible for all VAT declarations that were made before the transferYou will also be required to correct any errors and pay any amount due. However, you will not be required to pay any penalty.
However, if the old VAT number cannot be allotted, you will be issued a new number.
If you want to keep the previous owner’s VAT Registration Number, you must send a completed form VAT68 Request for transfer of a registration number with this application form. You can find the form at www.gov.uk/government/publications/vat-request-for-transfer-of-a-registration-number-vat68
For more information about taking over a going concern, please refer to VAT Notice 700/9 Transfer of business as a going concern.
Are you registering because you’re a non established taxable person making or intending to make taxable supplies in the UK?
Businesses without an establishment in the UK are required to register for UK VAT if you are supplying goods in UK that are taxable or you intend to make taxable supplies in the UK in the next 30 days.
Do you want to apply for exemption from registration?
You can apply for exemption from registration if your taxable supplies are all or nearly all zero-rated.
Do you expect to buy goods from other EU member states in the next 12 months?
If ‘Yes’, enter the value of goods you expect to buy in the 12 months following your date of registration.
Do you expect to sell goods to other EU member states in the next 12 months? If ‘Yes’, enter the value of goods you think you’ll sell in the 12 months following your date of registration.
Do not include the value of any services unless they’re directly related to moving goods (for example, commission, and freight insurance and so on)
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