How to pay VAT

At the end of each VAT period – usually every three months – you need to fill in a VAT Return. A VAT Return tells HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) how much VAT you charged to your customers, how much VAT you paid to your suppliers and the amount of VAT you must pay to or reclaim from HMRC.

VAT Returns must be submitted to HMRC via its online service unless you object to using computers because of religious beliefs or because you cannot use a computer (due to either age or a disability). If your turnover is over £100,000 – or if you are newly VAT-registered – you will have to file your VAT Return online and pay VAT electronically.

HMRC recommends that VAT payments are made electronically, for example by BACS, Direct Debit, Bank Giro or by Telephone or Internet banking. Post Office payments also count as electronic.

VAT Returns must be filed and any VAT owed must be paid by the due date. Failure to do so can lead to a surcharge of a percentage of the unpaid VAT. The percentage of unpaid VAT charged will rise if filing or payments continue to be late.

For more information, visit www.gov.uk/business-tax/vat or talk to the Tax Team at The Fish Partnership to discuss how they could assist you.