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Once your vat registration has been approved and you start selling goods and services under VAT or value added tax then you will also need to fill up the appropriate vat return form for filing your returns. The frequency of your vat returns will depend on the vat accounting scheme chosen by you and if you are in the UK then you will most probably have to fill up your form electronically itself.
Most countries in the European Union are moving towards the concept of a single market under the umbrella of the European Commission that has established eu vat rules for the participating countries. Thus, countries such as the UK, Poland, Sweden, Greece, Spain, Portugal, and many more have adopted the system of vat. In the UK, you will need to follow uk vat rules that have been issued by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs department.
Once your taxable sales touch the vat threshold amount of £70,000 in the previous 12 months or is expected to do so in the next 30 days then you will need to apply for vat registration, get your vat certificate and vat number, and turn into a vat registered trader. Once you have entered into the system of vat then you will need to follow specific vat rules issued by hmrc regarding collection and payment of vat, maintaining vat records as well as filing vat returns and while applying for vat refunds. You can also authorise your vat agent or accountant to represent you in the above actions so that you can focus on running your business while leaving the paperwork and vat matters to experts.
In a bid to reduce paper documents, hmrc encourages you to file online vat returns once you turn into a vat registered trader in the UK although you will anyway need to file online returns if your vat exclusive turnover crosses £100,000 or if you have applied for vat registration on or after April 1, 2010. You will most probably need to file vat returns on a quarterly basis although this will depend on your turnover and the vat accounting scheme that you have chosen. You will need to file vat returns even if you opt for the flat vat rate scheme. If you opt to pay vat returns online then you can simply fill up the online vat return form available at the hmrc vat website.
You should make sure that you fill up each box of the return vat form number 100 or 193 whether you fill up the form on paper or electronically. You should make sure to double-check all figures or ask your vat agent to do so before you submit your vat return form to hmrc. In case of any mistake in your vat return, you should remember to inform hmrc immediately so that that mistake can be rectified by making adjustments in your next return. Depending on the severity of the error, you might even have to pay a penalty to hmrc.
Once you are inducted into the system of vat then you will need to follow the system of collecting and paying vat as specified by hmrc. In addition to issuing vat invoices and maintaining vat records as per vat rules, you will also need to fill up the appropriate vat return form at the specified time so as to remain on the right side of the law.