February 4th, 2016

Do I need to be VAT registered?

I get asked this question daily, so here’s a quick guide to your responsibilities with respect to VAT and the registration threshold:

1.You must register for VAT when your VAT taxable turnover breaches the £82,000 threshold.

2.You must check your turnover for the previous 12-month period every month to ensure that you haven’t breached the VAT registration threshold.

3.You must include the following in your review:

4.Include any zero-rated items – only exclude VAT-exempt sales, and goods or services you supply outside of the UK.

5.Remember that any services you supply to customers overseas and not charged VAT are not ‘zero-rated’.  The place of supply is deemed to be where that customer is located, meaning that they are outside the scope of UK  VAT altogether and consequently, you are not required to include those sales in your VAT registration threshold calculations and they are not turnover for the purposes of any flat-rate scheme calculation.

6. If you’re over the threshold you must register for VAT by the end of the month following the month that you breached the threshold.

7. You must also register for VAT if you know that you will breach the threshold in any 30 day period.

8. If you temporarily breach the threshold then you can apply to HMRC for a registration ‘exception’.  You need to write to HMRC with evidence to show why your turnover won’t go over the VAT deregistration limit of £80,000 in the next 12 months.

If you have any concerns or worries about the VAT registration threshold then please do get in touch and we can guide you through.

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Actors Business advice Freelancers Limited Companies Tax Info VAT Writers


Alison obtained a First class degree in Accountancy and Management at UCLAN University. She then went on to qualify as a certified accountant in 2006 and became a founder member in 2011.

Alison trained at a practice in Liverpool and, within her 10 years there, she developed as an accounts manager and obtained a varied portfolio of clients which has provided her with a range of experience in accounts, audit, VAT and taxation.
Alison specialises in giving sound jargon-free advice to a range of small and medium sized businesses.

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