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At the end of each VAT period - usually every three months - you must complete a VAT Return online. A return tells HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC):
This guide explains in detail how to complete your return if you are not on the Flat Rate Scheme
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You must fill in every box on your return - don't leave any box blank - but you don't have to fill in Box 3 or Box 5 of your return as these are completed automatically for you based on the information you put in boxes 1,2 and 4. If you need to fill in negative amounts and 'not applicable' boxes when submitting your return you need to:
The way you fill out your VAT Return is different if you are on the Flat Rate Scheme.
This is the total amount of VAT you charged on sales to customers. You must also include the VAT you need to pay to HMRC for certain other supplies that you've made, such as:
Take away from this total any credit notes you've issued or debit notes you've received and enter the result in Box 1.
You need to work out the VAT due - but not yet paid by you - on goods that you buy from other EU countries, and any services directly related to those goods (such as delivery charges). Put the figure in Box 2. You may be able to reclaim this amount, and if so remember to include this figure in your total in Box 4.
This figure is worked out automatically for you - and is the total of Box 1 and Box 2 added together. It is the amount of VAT that is due to HMRC.
You must not enter the total VAT due figure into Box 3 or any other box on your return.
This is the VAT you have been charged on your purchases for use in your business. You should also include:
Deduct from this total:
The result is the total VAT you can claim back from HMRC.
This is calculated automatically from Box 3 and Box 4 - deducting the smaller figure from the larger one and entering the difference.
Before completing the remaining boxes of your return, please make sure that the figure shown in Box 5 on your return (ie the net VAT due or repayable) is the same as the figure you have calculated. If it isn't, then you have either entered a figure incorrectly in boxes 1, 2 or 4, or there is a fault in your calculations. Please check that you have entered the correct figures, and amend the return as necessary before you click on 'submit', as you can't amend your return after you have submitted it.
Enter the total figure for your sales (excluding VAT) for the period, that is, the sales on which you charged the VAT you put in Box 1. Additionally, you should also include:
Take off the net amount of any credit notes you issued or debit notes you received.
If you make reverse charge sales - sales to which a reverse charge is applied - you must notify HMRC and send in regular Reverse Charge Sales Lists.
Enter the total figure for your purchases (excluding VAT) for the period, including:
You only need to fill in Box 8 and Box 9 if you've supplied goods to or acquired goods from another EU country.
Put in the total value of goods you supplied to another EU country and services related to those goods (such as delivery charges). Please note that services related to those goods should only be included if they form part of the overall invoice total. If these, or any other services, have been invoiced separately they should not be included. You should do this for all goods that were physically removed from the UK to another EU country, even if there was no actual sale, or if the sale was invoiced to a person or organisation outside the EU.
Remember to also include this amount in your Box 6 total.
You may also have to complete an EC Sales List (ESL) for supplies to VAT-registered customers in other EU countries.
You should not include in Box 8 the value of goods supplied to customers (including private individuals) who are not registered for VAT where you have not exceeded the 'distance selling' threshold. Each EU country can set its own distance selling threshold which at present must be roughly the equivalent of either €35,000 or €100,000.
Enter the total value of goods you received from VAT registered suppliers in another EU country and services related to those goods (such as delivery charges). Please note that services related to those goods should only be included if they form part of the overall invoice total. If these, or any other services, have been invoiced separately they should not be included. You should do this for all goods that were physically shipped to you from another EU country, even if there was no actual purchase, or if the goods were invoiced to a person or organisation outside the EU.
Remember to also include this amount in your Box 7 total.
If the VAT rate changes, you complete your VAT Return in exactly the same way. If the rate changes during your return period, you calculate a total for each rate and just add them together to get the figures that go in each.