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Detail of outcome
A response document to the original consultation was published on 22 April 2014 and set out how the Government will proceed. Legislation will be introduced to clarify that telephone filing is an alternative form of electronic filing and will be available to businesses that satisfy HMRC that they meet certain criteria. The document also includes the proposed draft amendments to the VAT Regulations.
Following technical consultation on the proposed draft legislation, a summary of responses was published on 1 July 2014. Amended VAT Regulations were laid before Parliament on 9 June 2014, and will enter into force on 1 July 2014.
All VAT registered businesses (apart from those excepted on religious grounds and those subject to insolvency procedures) must file their VAT returns using an approved means of electronic communication. This mandatory requirement was introduced in law on 1 April 2012. Prior to this, following a consultation exercise, HMRC established procedures to help businesses that required assistance to file online.
However, following a Tribunal decision, the government is carrying out this review to ensure that:
- the law provides a means by which all VAT registered businesses that are required to do so can file using an approved means of electronic communications
- HMRC’s guidance to businesses who have difficulty in filing online is clear and appropriate options are available to businesses