Deferral of VAT payments update

It was announced at the end of March that VAT registered businesses have the option to defer any VAT payments due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020.

HMRC’s guidance for the deferral of VAT payments has been updated and states that you can only defer the following:

  • quarterly and monthly VAT returns’ payments for the periods ending in February, March and April
  • payments on account due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020
  • annual accounting advance payments due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020

The deferral does not cover payments for VAT MOSS or import VAT.

There is no application process required to request this deferral as permission is automatic and all VAT-registered UK businesses are eligible. However, businesses can still choose to pay any VAT due as normal. HMRC are continuing to process VAT reclaims and refunds as normal.

It is important to note that this is only a deferral and whilst no interest or penalties will be charged, the full amount of VAT due will still need to be repaid. If you choose to defer your VAT payment as a result of Coronavirus then you must pay the VAT due to HMRC on or before 31 March 2021.

If you are planning to make use of the special deferral period and you pay by direct debit, then you must cancel your direct debit in order to benefit from the VAT deferral. You can cancel your direct debit online using online banking or contact your bank if necessary. Please make sure that you do this as soon as possible to ensure that HMRC do not automatically collect the VAT due. You will also need to remember to set up the direct debit again when your next VAT payment is due (if no further deferrals are announced).

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